Adaptive Nanosystems

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Chaired by Ben Feringa and Alan Rowan

The main goal of this research program is the design, synthesis, and study of the dynamic behaviour and its application to synthetic molecular motor systems in order to mimic and understand adaptive functions, achieve controlled motion and develop systems that can reconfigure dynamically and perform machine-like functions. Artificial nano-scale devices and molecular motors that mimic the dynamic and mechanical functions of complex biological systems, yet are simpler in design and tolerant of a broader range of operating conditions, are highly desirable and will form the core of future nanomachines. In this research program we follow the so-called bottom-up approach, promulgated by Feynman over half a century ago, where entirely synthetic systems that feature motor and switch functions and which rely on assembly processes using small molecular building blocks are employed. This research program covers the following topics:

1a. Molecular and nano-motors
1b. Processive and biomimetic catalytic systems
1c. Microtubules mimics