Use of synthetic organic approaches1a for the preparation of novel aniline-based materials allow us to exploit their tuneable conductive, redox and optical properties.1b We have thus explored the use of such and related materials in two key areas:
Functional 1D Wires: We are exploiting this functional aniline-based platform to prepare novel redox-active cationic surfactants, and investigating their supramolecular organisation into self-assembled nanowires in solution,2 and actively tuning their packing parameter to address assembly in a reversible fashion.3 We are furthermore expanding our activities to the fabrication of novel OFET devices,4a and other electroactive supramolecular polymers,4b thus continuing to explore structure-property-function relationships.
Functional 3D Materials: Applying these reactions for the formation of conjugated microporous polymers provided routes to efficient and highly selective and tunable CO2 capture,5a and energy storage.5b Using 2-photon polymerisation-based direct laser writing (DLW), finely controlled 3D-printed conjugated structures can be prepared to form actively tuneable photonic crystals.6
1) a) C. F. J. Faul, Acc. Chem. Res. 2014, 47, 3428; b) E. J. Townsend et al., ChemNanoMat 2018, 4, 10.1002/cnma.201800194; 2) O. A. Bell et al., J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2015, 137, 14288; 3) W. Lyu et al., Chem. Sci., 2018, 9, 4392; 4a) X. Li, P. J. Wolanin et al., Nature Commun. 2017, 8, 15909; 4b) C. Jarret-Wilkins et al., Chem. Eur. J. 2018, 24, just accepted; 5a) Y. Liao et al., Macromolecules, 2016, 49, 6322; 5b) H. Wang et al., Chem. Mater. 2017, 29, 4885; 6) Y. Hu et al., Adv. Opt. Mater., 2017, 5, 1600458
Charl F. J. Faul is Professor of Materials Chemistry and Director of Graduate Recruitment for the School of Chemistry, University of Bristol, UK. He received his PhD from the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa, in 2000. After 4 years, first as post-doctoral researcher, and then as senior scientist at the Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces (Potsdam, Germany), he moved to Bristol in 2005. He held visiting professorships at the Helsinki University of Technology (2006 – 2010), the Chinese Academy of Sciences (National Centre for Nanoscience and Technology, Beijing, 2012) and the University of Rennes, France (2018), and is Adjunct Professor at the Department of Chemistry, Tsinghua University, Beijing, since November 2013.
He is co-Principal Investigator and member of the Management Board of the £12M EPSRC-funded centre for doctoral training, the Bristol Centre for Functional Nanomaterials (BCFN). As Director of Graduate Recruitment he is responsible for and has oversight of all graduate recruitment activities within the School of Chemistry.
Charl is a synthetic materials chemist with a multidisciplinary international research group focussing on the design and synthesis of functional nanostructured materials. His activities range from fundamental to application-driven areas, where hierarchical and ionic self-assembly and the design and synthesis of electroactive nanomaterials are explored. Applications are actively pursued in the areas of energy and gas storage (CO2 capture, storage, conversion), and electroactive materials and devices (nanowire-based field-effect transistors, actuators for robotics, and 3D-printed addressable photonic structures).