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The rise of supramolecular chemistry in industry


Member of Chimica Oggi/Chemistry Today Scientific Advisory Board
DSM Chemical Technology R&D B.V., Urmonderbaan 22, 6167 RD Geleen, Netherlands

The relevance of non-covalent molecular interactions is apparent in our daily life: they play crucial roles in natural occurring systems such as in photosynthesis, protein folding, and indeed the action of a cell as a whole. Furthermore, these interactions have also proven their potential in industrial applications as they have played – and are still playing – an important role in ascertaining the desired properties of the functional assemblies/products created.
En route to realizing its full potential it is not surprising that in the last two decades a tremendous boost in academic contributions has been observed, resulting in a status of supramolecular chemistry leaving its embryonic development phase. A major reason for this development is that the underlying scientific themes and challenges are being unravelled and mastered. Most importantly, the field is unfolding its true strength in the ability to upfront design non-covalent interactions in the molecular structure to steer the assembly of molecules towards a morphology (mesoscopic structure) that – in its turn – is required to deliver the desired macroscopic properties. As a result of this ability, supramol ...

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