Nanoscale chiral patterning of metal surfaces for enantioselective processes

Chiral surfaces are critical components of enantioselective heterogeneous processes, such as those used to prepare enantiomerically pure pharmaceuticals. While the majority of chiral surfaces in practical use are based on achiral materials whose surfaces have been modified with enantiomerically pure chiral adsorbates, there are many examples of inorganic materials with valuable surface properties that could be rendered enantiospecific, if their surfaces were intrinsically chiral. Such intrinsically chiral surfaces have been prepared in the laboratory and demonstrated to exhibit enantiospecific adsorption, surface chemistry, electron emission, etc. One of the key challenges to the practical implementation of such materials is the development of scalable methods for their production in high surface area, enantiomerically pure form. This perspective addresses some of the possible paths and future opportunities for scalable preparation of chiral metal surfaces (1).


(1) Shukla. N. and Gellman A.J. Nature Materials, 2020, volume 19, 939–945.