Single-molecule toroics in Ising-type lanthanide molecular clusters
Single-molecule toroics (SMTs) are defined, by analogy with single-molecule magnets, as bistable molecules with a toroidal magnetic state, and seem to be most promising for future applications in quantum computing and information storage and use as multiferroic materials with magnetoelectric effect. As an interdisciplinary research area that spans chemistry, physics and material sciences, synthetic chemists have produced systems suitable for detailed study by physicists and materials scientists, while ab initio calculations have been playing a major role in the detection of toroidal magnetization and the advancement of this field. In this tutorial review, we demonstrate the research developed in the fascinating and challenging field of molecular-based SMTs with particular focus on how recent studies tend to address the issue of toroidal arrangement of the magnetic moment in these systems. Herein, nine typical SMTs are summarized, showing that the assembly of wheel-shaped complexes with the high symmetry of the molecule unit and strong intra-molecular dipolar interactions using strong anisotropy metal ions represents the most promising route toward the design of a toroidal moment. Furthermore, the linkage of such robust toroidal moment units with ferromagnetic type through appropriate bridging ligands enhances the toroidal magnetic moment per unit cell.