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A review article on “Metal-organic framework based systems for CO2 sensing” by Dr Stefania Tanase-Grecea and coworkers at the Functional Materials research group has turned out to be one of the most popular articles of 2021 of the Journal of Materials Chemistry C. It was also designated as a 'Hot Paper' by the editors of the journal.

Image: HIMS.

The review was written at the invitation of the journal's editors as a contribution to a special issue in honour of Prof. Kees Hummelen of the University of Groningen, on the occasion of his retirement.


Monitoring CO2 levels in the atmosphere as well as in workplace environments is strictly regulated. Commercial sensors based on polymeric materials have a low operating temperature, yet exhibit low selectivity. Molecular systems such as metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) are promising materials that can be used for CO2 sensing applications. They are formed through strong interactions between metal ions or clusters with easy-to-modify organic linkers and have exceptionally high surface areas and well-defined accessible pores. The host–guest interactions in MOFs and their responsiveness to physical and chemical stimuli can be exploited to address the critical issues in chemical sensing applications, such as fast response, sensitivity and specificity. This review provides an overview of the techniques that can be used to detect CO2 through the use of MOFs, highlighting the most promising MOF materials that exhibit CO2 sensing properties. The potential of MOFs in the development of CO2 sensors is also discussed.

Paper details

Andreea Gheorghe, Olivier Lugier, Bohui Yea and Stefania Tanase: Metal-organic framework based systems for CO2 sensing. J. Mater. Chem. C, 2021, 9, 16132 DOI: 10.1039/D1TC02249K