PAPER: Chiral Induction with Chiral Conformational Switches in the Limit of Low “Sergeants to Soldiers” Ratio

Nuermaimaiti A, Bombis C, Knudsen MM, Cramer JR, Lægsgaard E, Besenbacher F, Gothelf KV, Linderoth TR.
ACS Nano. 2014 Aug 26;8(8):8074-81. doi: 10.1021/nn502097h. Epub 2014 Jul 29.
Sino-Danish Center for Molecular Nanostructures on Surfaces, Interdisciplinary Nanoscience Center (iNANO) and Department of Physics and Astronomy, Aarhus University , Gustav Wieds Vej 14, 8000 Aarhus C, Denmark.


Molecular-level insights into chiral adsorption phenomena are highly relevant within the fields of asymmetric heterogeneous catalysis or chiralseparation and may contribute to understand the origins of homochirality in nature. Here, we investigate chiral induction by the “sergeants andsoldiers” mechanism for an oligo(phenylene ethynylene) based chiral conformational switch by coadsorbing it with an intrinsically chiral seed on Au(111). Through statistical analysis of scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) data, we demonstrate successful chiral induction with a very lowconcentration of seeding molecules down to 3%. The microscopic mechanism for the observed chiral induction is suggested to involve nucleation of the intrinsically chiral seeds, allowing for effective transfer and amplification of chirality to large numbers of soldier target molecules.

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