A Chiral Van Der Waals Material Self-Assembled from the High Symmetry Molecules C60 and SnI4
2020-04-27T11:29:22Z (GMT) by
The design of new chiral materials usually requires stereoselective organic synthesis to create molecules with chiral centers. Less commonly, achiral molecules can self-assemble into chiral materials, despite the absence of intrinsic molecular chirality. Here, we demonstrate the assembly of high-symmetry molecules into a chiral van der Waals structure by synthesizing crystals of C60(SnI4)2 from icosahedral buckminsterfullerene (C60) and tetrahedral SnI4 molecules through spontaneous self-assembly. Our results represent the remarkable emergence of chirality from the self-assembly of two of the most highly symmetric molecules, demonstrating that almost any molecular precursor can be considered when designing chiral assemblies.