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Beyond Covalent Crosslinks: Applications of Supramolecular Gels

Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA
Department of Chemistry, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Received: 20 March 2018 / Revised: 26 April 2018 / Accepted: 28 April 2018 / Published: 3 May 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Supramolecular Gels)
PDF [4558 KB, uploaded 24 May 2018]


Traditionally, gels have been defined by their covalently cross-linked polymer networks. Supramolecular gels challenge this framework by relying on non-covalent interactions for self-organization into hierarchical structures. This class of materials offers a variety of novel and exciting potential applications. This review draws together recent advances in supramolecular gels with an emphasis on their proposed uses as optoelectronic, energy, biomedical, and biological materials. Additional special topics reviewed include environmental remediation, participation in synthesis procedures, and other industrial uses. The examples presented here demonstrate unique benefits of supramolecular gels, including tunability, processability, and self-healing capability, enabling a new approach to solve engineering challenges. View Full-Text
Keywords: supramolecular gel; self-assembly; gels; applied soft matter supramolecular gel; self-assembly; gels; applied soft matter

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Christoff-Tempesta, T.; Lew, A.J.; Ortony, J.H. Beyond Covalent Crosslinks: Applications of Supramolecular Gels. Gels 2018, 4, 40.

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