This article presents a brief account on designing of calixarene-based molecular sensor for recognition of various metal ions and anions and also different analytical techniques to monitor the recognition event. This review focuses only on calixarene derivatives, in which mainly the lower rim is modified incorporating either crown moiety to make calix-crown hybrid ionophore to encapsulate metal ions or some fluoregenic inorganic and organic moieties to use it as signalling unit. In order to investigate effect of conformation of the calixarene unit and steric crowding on ion selectivity, designing of these molecules have been made using both the cone and 1,3-alternate conformations of the calixarene unit and also incorporating bulky tert-butyl group in few cases to impose controlled steric crowding. Among various ions, here focuses are mainly on biologically and commercially important alkali metal ion such as K+, toxic metal ions such as Hg2+, Pb2+, Cd2+, important transition metal ion such as Cu2+ and toxic anion like F−. The techniques used to monitor the recognition event and also to determine binding constants with strongly interacting ions are fluorescence, UV-vis and 1H NMR spectroscopy. Most of the ionophores reported in this review have been characterized crystallographically, however no structural information (except one case) are incorporated in this article, as it will occupy space without significant enhancement of chemistry part. Different factors such as size of the ionophore cavity, size of metal ion, coordination sites/donor atoms, steric crowding and solvents, which determine selectivity have been discussed. Response of ion recognition process to different analytical techniques is another interesting factor discussed in this article.
Volume 134, 2022
Continuous Article Publishing mode
Click here for Editorial Note on CAP Mode