Gas transport through metal-organic framework membranes (MOFs) was switched in situ by applying an external electric field (E-field). The switching of gas permeation upon E-field polarization could be explained by the structural transformation of the zeolitic imidazolate framework ZIF-8 into polymorphs with more rigid lattices. Permeation measurements under a direct-current E-field poling of 500 volts per millimeter showed reversibly controlled switching of the ZIF-8 into polar polymorphs, which was confirmed by x-ray diffraction and ab initio calculations. The stiffening of the lattice causes a reduction in gas transport through the membrane and sharpens the molecular sieving capability. Dielectric spectroscopy, polarization, and deuterium nuclear magnetic resonance studies revealed low-frequency resonances of ZIF-8 that we attribute to lattice flexibility and linker movement. Upon E-field polarization, we observed a defibrillation of the different lattice motions.
- 1.03 PHYSICAL SCIENCES AND ASTRONOMY
- 1.06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES