Salting-in species induced self-assembly of stable MOFs†
Metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) are attracting immense research interest despite the fact that their synthesis usually proceeds in organic media or under harsh conditions depending on specific cases. Herein, Hofmeister effect was firstly introduced for the construction of MOFs and thereafter a general salting-in species (SS) induced self-assembly strategy was proposed for the aqueous-phase and mild synthesis of stable MOFs based on a unique “solubilization-mediating” mechanism. The SS not only improved the solubility of organic ligands, but also effectively mediated the mutual proximity of the organic linkers and the inorganic nodes, thus facilitating the crystallization of MOFs under mild conditions. Several typical and highly useful stable MOFs were exemplified owing to the availability of various SS. This strategy could set a framework for the development of more stable MOFs in aqueous phase and drive the large-scale and economic production of MOFs.