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Keywords:

  • chirality;
  • helicenes;
  • scanning probe microscopy;
  • spontaneous resolution;
  • surface-confined self-assembly
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

Birds of a feather flock together: STM and DFT studies provide the first example of spontaneous chiral resolution of a helicene on a surface. Racemic 6,13-dicyano[7]helicene forms fully segregated domains of pure enantiomers (2D conglomerate) on Cu(111). The propensity of the system to optimize intermolecular CN⋅⋅⋅HC(Ar) hydrogen bonding and CN⋅⋅⋅CN dipolar interactions translates into chiral recognition with preferential assembly of homochiral molecules.