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Multicomponent Assembly of Fluorescent-Tag Functionalized Ligands in Metal-Organic Frameworks for Sensing Explosives
, Arun Bar Kumar, Partha Mukherjee Sarathi
Published in
Volume: 20
Issue: 41
Pages: 13321 - 13336
Detection of trace amounts of explosive materials is significantly important for security concerns and pollution control. Four multicomponent metal-organic frameworks (MOFs-12, 13, 23 and 123) have been synthesized by employing ligands embedded with fluorescent tags. The multicomponent assembly of the ligands was utilized to acquire a diverse electronic behavior of the MOFs and the fluorescent tags were strategically chosen to enhance the electron density in the MOFs. The phase purity of the MOFs was established by PXRD, NMR spectroscopy and finally by single-crystal XRD. Single-crystal structures of the MOFs-12 and 13 showed the formation of three-dimensional porous networks with the aromatic tags projecting inwardly into the pores. These electron-rich MOFs were utilized for detection of explosive nitroaromatic compounds (NACs) through fluorescence quenching with high selectivity and sensitivity. The rate of fluorescence quenching for all the MOFs follows the order of electron deficiency of the NACs. We also showed the detection of picric acid (PA) by luminescent MOFs is not always reliable and can be misleading. This attracts our attention to explore these MOFs for sensing picryl chloride (PC), which is as explosive as picric acid and used widely to prepare more stable explosives like 2,4,6-trinitroaniline from PA. Moreover, the recyclability and sensitivity studies indicated that these MOFs can be reused several times with parts per billion (ppb) levels of sensitivity towards PC and 2,4,6-trinitrotoluene (TNT).
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