Covalent organic networks are usually synthesized on noble metal surfaces. It is widely understood that these metals have strong catalytic abilities. However, it is of great interest the use of nonmetallic surfaces in these kind of reactions.
At the NanoPhysics Lab (CMF, ) they’re studying one of these routes to obtain covalent molecular systems on non-metallic substrates. In particular they’ve managed to understand and improve the synthesis of nanoribbons on TiO2 surfaces. They show that highly reduced surfaces (in opposition to stoichiometric TiO2) increases the reaction yield and improved polymer length.
We did this picture to artistically illustrate the process under the close supervision of Dr. Celia Rogero.