Self-Assembly of Cavitand-Based Coordination Cages


Enrico Dalcanale Dipartimento di Chimica Organica e Industriale, Università di Parma

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Why is self-assembly so appealing to nanoscience in general and nanotechnology in particular? One answer is, in Whitesides's words: “Self-assembly is one of the few practical strategies for making ensembles of nanostructures.”

The key issue in self-assembly is that the desired structures are quantitatively formed by simply mixing the programmed components under thermodynamic control. Unlike covalent synthesis, self-assembly is a reversible process. This is a very attractive feature because it allows the system to self-repair possible structural deficiencies.