Isabelle Dixon. On the 2016 Nobel prize in chemistry (IRSAMC - 16 janvier 2017)

Isabelle Dixon
LCPQ, Toulouse

LIEU  : Salle de séminaire, IRSAMC - Bat. IIIr1-B4 - 3ème étage
DATE  : 16 Janvier 2017, 14 H

The 2016 Nobel prize in chemistry was awarded to J.-P. Sauvage, J.F. Stoddart and B. Feringa, three synthetic molecular chemists. Two of the laureates have developed the synthesis of topological molecules and, subsequently, their complexification into molecular machines : shuttles, muscles, tweezers etc. The third laureate, also involved in amazing synthetic chemist, has produced the first unidirectional molecular rotor. Recent developments involve for example such rotary motors being embedded into liquid crystals and triggering the rotation of a much larger object.

In this talk I will first present how topological molecules appeared in chemistry (focusing on catenanes and rotaxanes), and how they evolved from curiosities into objects capable of undergoing physically (Sauvage) or chemically (Stoddart) controlled motions. I will also review examples of unidirectional rotary motors (Feringa) that are fuelled by light, heat and chemicals. This work is intrinsically highly fundamental, but is gradually finding applications in catalysis, for drug delivery or in materials science.

No particular skills on synthetic chemistry are required to follow this talk :-)

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