Jan 24, 2024

Scientists accidently tie the world’s smallest, tightest knot

Posted by in category: particle physics

This self-assembling ‘metallaknot’ of gold emerged when gold acetylide was combined with a carbon structure known as a diphosphine ligand.

Since 1989, chemists have been exploring ways to tie molecular knots using metal ions to guide helical chains into specific configurations. These knots are typically secured by the presence of metal atoms, which are removed at the end of the process to prevent untying.

However, the self-assembly of the new gold knot suggests a different mechanism at play, one that even the researchers, including chemist Richard Puddephatt from the University of Western Ontario, find mysterious.

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