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Pure Appl. Chem., 2003, Vol. 75, No. 5, pp. 563-575

In control of switching, motion, and organization

B. L. Feringa*, R. A. van Delden and M. K. J. ter Wiel

Department of Organic Chemistry, Stratingh Institute, University of Groningen, Nijenborgh 4, 9747 AG Groningen, The Netherlands

Abstract: Nature’s solutions to control organization, switching, and linear and rotary motion are not only extremely elegant, but fascinating if one considers the design and synthesis of artificial molecular systems with such functions in order to add components to the nanotoolbox. The synthesis of chiroptical molecular switches and their application in the control of the organization of liquid crystalline materials is outlined. The first light-driven unidirectional molecular motor is described, and the second-generation motor as well as approaches to control the speed of the rotary motion are discussed.