The present invention relates to methods and starting materials for forming molecular-sized grids or nets, or other structures based on such grids and nets, by creating molecular links between elementary molecular modules constrained to move in only two directions on an interface or surface by adhesion or bonding to that interface or surface. In the methods of this invention, monomers are employed as the building blocks of grids and more complex structures. Monomers are introduced onto and allowed to adhere or bond to an interface. The connector groups of adjacent adhered monomers are then polymerized with each other to form a regular grid in two dimensions above the interface. Modules that are not bound or adhered to the interface are removed prior to reaction of the connector groups to avoid undesired three-dimensional cross-linking and the formation of non-grid structures. Grids formed by the methods of this invention are useful in a variety of applications, including among others, for separations technology, as masks for forming regular surface structures (i.e., metal deposition) and as templates for three-dimensional molecular-sized structures.
This invention was made with Government support under contract number DE-FG03-94ER12141 awarded by the Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in this invention.
This invention was made, at least in part, through funding from the United States government. The United States government has certain rights in this invention.