Processing of covalent organic frameworks: an ingredient for a material to succeed
Covalent organic frameworks (COFs) are an emerging class of new organic polymers showing tuneable permanent porosity and crystallinity. They are formed, using modular chemistry concepts, by condensation reactions between their molecular precursors based on the formation of dynamic bonds. Despite much effort having been devoted towards the design of the physical and/or chemical properties of these materials by selecting their initial building blocks, the importance of processability for their applications has only recently emerged. This tutorial review article rationalizes the strategies used so far on COF processability leading to the formation of thin-films, membranes, or individual particles with controlled shape and size as well as composite fabrication. We aim to provide a rational perspective of the importance of COF processability towards potential applications of COFs in many different fields which are at the forefront of research in materials science.