Two-dimensional (2D) materials with highly ordered in-plane nanopores are crucial for numerous applications, but their rational synthesis and local structural characterization remain two grand challenges. We illustrate here that single-crystalline ultrathin 2D MOF nanosheets (MONs) with intrinsic porosity can be prepared by exfoliating layered metal-organic frameworks (MOFs), whose layers are stabilized by sterically bulky groups. As a result, three three-dimensional (3D) isostructural lanthanide MOFs possessing porous layer structures are constructed by coordinating metal ions with an angular dicarboxylate linker derived from chiral 1,1'-biphenyl phosphoric acid with pendant mesityl groups. The Eu-MOF is readily ultrasonic exfoliated into single-crystalline nanosheets with a thickness of ca. 6.0 nm (2 layers) and a lateral size of 1.5 × 3.0 μm2. The detailed structural information, i.e., the pore channels and individual organic and inorganic building units in the framework, is clearly visualized by a low-dose high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) technique. Benefiting from their ultrathin feature, the nanosheets are well embedded into the polymer matrix to form free-standing mixed-matrix membranes. In both the solution and membrane phase, the fluorescence of the MONs can be effectively quenched by a total of 17 chiral terpenes and terpenoids through supramolecular interactions with uncoordinated chiral phosphoric acids, leading to a chiral optical sensor for detecting vapor enantiomers, which is among the most challenging molecular recognition tasks.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Journal||Journal of the American Chemical Society|
|State||Published - Feb 23 2021|
Bibliographical noteKAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2021-02-26
Acknowledgements: This work was financially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grants 21431004, 21620102001, 21875136, and 91856204), the National Key Basic Research Program of China (Grant 2016YFA0203400), and the Key Project of Basic Research of Shanghai
(17JC1403100 and 18JC1413200).