Piston-rotaxanes as molecular shock absorbers

E. M. Sevick, D. R.M. Williams

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    25 Citations (Scopus)


    We describe the thermomechanical response of a new molecular system that behaves as a shock absorber. The system consists of a rodlike rotaxane connected to a piston and tethered to a surface. The response of this system is dominated by the translational entropy of the rotaxane rings and can be calculated exactly. The force laws are contrasted with those for a rigid rod and a polymer. In some cases, the rotaxanes undergo a sudden transition to a tilted state when compressed. These piston-rotaxanes provide a potential motif for the design of a new class of materials with a novel thermomechanical response.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)5864-5868
    Number of pages5
    Issue number8
    Publication statusPublished - 20 Apr 2010

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