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Sensing and Discrimination of Explosives at Variable Concentrations with a Large-Pore MOF as Part of a Luminescent Array

  • Monika Jurcic
    Monika Jurcic
    Department of Chemistry, University College London, 20 Gordon Street, London WC1H 0AJ, U.K.
  • William J. Peveler*
    William J. Peveler
    Division of Biomedical Engineering, School of Engineering, College of Science and Engineering, University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8LT, U.K.
    *E-mail: [email protected]
  • Christopher N. Savory
    Christopher N. Savory
    Department of Chemistry, University College London, 20 Gordon Street, London WC1H 0AJ, U.K.
  • Dejan-Krešimir Bučar
    Dejan-Krešimir Bučar
    Department of Chemistry, University College London, 20 Gordon Street, London WC1H 0AJ, U.K.
  • Anthony J. Kenyon
    Anthony J. Kenyon
    Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering, University College London, London WC1E 7JE, U.K.
  • David O. Scanlon
    David O. Scanlon
    Department of Chemistry, University College London, 20 Gordon Street, London WC1H 0AJ, U.K.
    Diamond Light Source Ltd., Diamond House, Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, Didcot, Oxfordshire OX11 0DE, U.K.
  • , and 
  • Ivan P. Parkin
    Ivan P. Parkin
    Department of Chemistry, University College London, 20 Gordon Street, London WC1H 0AJ, U.K.
Cite this: ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 2019, 11, 12, 11618–11626
Publication Date (Web):March 4, 2019
Copyright © 2019 American Chemical Society

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    Abstract Image

    Metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) have shown great promise for sensing of dangerous chemicals, including environmental toxins, nerve agents, and explosives. However, challenges remain, such as the sensing of larger analytes and the discrimination between similar analytes at different concentrations. Herein, we present the synthesis and development of a new, large-pore MOF for explosives sensing and demonstrate its excellent sensitivity against a range of relevant explosive compounds including trinitrotoluene and pentaerythritol tetranitrate. We have developed an improved, thorough methodology to eliminate common sources of error in our sensing protocol. We then combine this new MOF with two others as part of a three-MOF array for luminescent sensing and discrimination of five explosives. This sensor works at part-per-million concentrations and, importantly, can discriminate explosives with high accuracy without reference to their concentration.

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    The Supporting Information is available free of charge on the ACS Publications website at DOI: 10.1021/acsami.8b22385.

    • Experimental information and methodology, computational methodology, supporting figures (PDF)

    • Crystallographic data (CIF)

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    CCDC 1552177 contains the supplementary crystallographic data for MJ3. The data can be obtained free of charge via, or by emailing [email protected], or by contacting The Cambridge Crystallographic Data Centre, 12 Union Road, Cambridge CB2 1EZ, U.K.; fax: +44 1223 336033.

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