Exploring the Impact of the Linker Length on Heat Transport in Metal-Organic Frameworks

Wieser, S. and Kamencek, T. and Schmid, R. and Bedoya-Martínez, N. and Zojer, E.

Volume: 12 Pages:
DOI: 10.3390/nano12132142
Published: 2022

Metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) are a highly versatile group of porous materials suit-able for a broad range of applications, which often crucially depend on the MOFs’ heat transport properties. Nevertheless, detailed relationships between the chemical structure of MOFs and their thermal conductivities are still largely missing. To lay the foundations for developing such rela-tionships, we performed non-equilibrium molecular dynamics simulations to analyze heat transport in a selected set of materials. In particular, we focus on the impact of organic linkers, the inorganic nodes and the interfaces between them. To obtain reliable data, great care was taken to generate and thoroughly benchmark system-specific force fields building on ab-initio-based refer-ence data. To systematically separate the different factors arising from the complex structures of MOF, we also studied a series of suitably designed model systems. Notably, besides the expected trend that longer linkers lead to a reduction in thermal conductivity due to an increase in porosity, they also cause an increase in the interface resistance between the different building blocks of the MOFs. This is relevant insofar as the interface resistance dominates the total thermal resistance of the MOF. Employing suitably designed model systems, it can be shown that this dominance of the interface resistance is not the consequence of the specific, potentially weak, chemical interactions between nodes and linkers. Rather, it is inherent to the framework structures of the MOFs. These findings improve our understanding of heat transport in MOFs and will help in tailoring the thermal conductivities of MOFs for specific applications. © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

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