It has long been believed that metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) were a purely synthetic construct, but recent discoveries of natural examples with similar properties and structure, like the minerals stepanovite and zhemchuzhnikovite, have cast doubt on this assumption. MOFs have many applications from carbon dioxide capture to the harvesting water from dry desert air.
Professor Geoffrey Ozin explores how “nature did it first” with MOFs, as well as the important applications of this class of solids in a new article for Advanced Science News.
“Unsurprisingly, the discovery of stepanovite and zhemchuzhnikovite has since inspired the search for other mineral MOFs with similar or different organic ligands.” he writes. “The unearthing of mineral MOFs with permanent crystalline microporosity will prove most interesting scientifically, and especially so if they exist at industrially significant mineral deposit scales, then the future of MOF applications might really lie in the soil.”
Read more of Professor Ozin’s article at Advanced Science News: https://www.advancedsciencenews.com/natures-metal-organic-frameworks/