Dielectric Properties of Zeolitic Imidazolate Frameworks in the Broad-Band Infrared Regime

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


  • Matthew R. Ryder
  • Zhixin Zeng
  • Kirill Titov
  • E. M. Mahdi
  • Irina Flyagina
  • Thomas D. Bennett
  • Bartolomeo Civalleri
  • Chris S. Kelley
  • Mark D. Frogley
  • Gianfelice Cinque
  • Jin Chong Tan

Colleges, School and Institutes

External organisations

  • University of Oxford
  • Diamond Light Source
  • ISIS Facility
  • University of Cambridge
  • University of Torino


The field of metal-organic framework (MOF) materials is rapidly advancing toward practical applications; consequently, it is urgent to achieve a better understanding and precise control of their physical properties. Yet, research on the dielectric properties of MOFs is at its infancy, where studies are confined to the static dielectric behavior or lower-frequency response (kHz-MHz) only. Herein, we present the pioneering use of synchrotron-based infrared reflectivity experiments combined with density functional theory (DFT) calculations to accurately determine the dynamic dielectric properties of zeolitic imidazolate frameworks (ZIFs, a topical family of MOFs). We show, for the first time, the frequency-dependent dielectric response of representative ZIF compounds, bridging the near-, mid-, and far-infrared (terahertz, THz) broad-band frequencies. We establish the structure-property relations as a function of framework porosity and structural change. Our comprehensive results will pave the way for novel ZIF-based terahertz applications, such as infrared optical sensors and high-speed wireless communications.

Bibliographic note

Funding Information: We acknowledge the Diamond Light Source for the provision of beamtime no. SM10215 and SM14902 at B22 MIRIAM. M.R.R. would like to thank the U.K. Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) for a DTA postgraduate scholarship and the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) CMSD Award 13-05. M.R.R. would also like to thank the EPSRC for a Doctoral Prize Fellowship and the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (RAL) for access to the SCARF cluster and additional computing resources. T.D.B. would like to thank the Royal Society for a University Research Fellowship. J.C.T. acknowledges the EPSRC for research funding (EP/N014960/ 1). We are grateful to the ISIS Support Laboratories, especially Dr. Marek Jura and Dr. Gavin Stenning at the Materials Characterisation Laboratory (R53), for access to the X-ray diffraction equipment. We thank the Research Complex at Harwell (RCaH) for the provision of the advanced materials characterization suite. Publisher Copyright: © 2018 American Chemical Society. Copyright: Copyright 2018 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2678-2684
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry Letters
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 17 May 2018