MOFs as nanoDampers or nanoSprings : an exploration of the thermodynamic and mechanical properties of Metal Organic Frameworks

ANR Blanc 2012

N° ANR-12-BS10-005-01

Coordination : Isabelle BEURROIES, MADIREL

Dates : January 2013 - December 2016

The Idea

Metal-Organic Frameworks (MOFs) form a family of porous inorganic-organic ordered hybrid materials which have generated huge interest in the scientific community. Whilst sorption, magnetic, catalytic and drug delivery properties have been largely documented, the basic mechanical properties of these materials have not received as much interest. However, the fact that several structures are highly flexible may be of interest to exploit as dampers or springs as an alternative to previous work carried out on hydrophobic silica based materials. The advantage of MOFs being that the almost infinite possibility to modulate the structure and chemical/physical properties of these materials means that the mechanical properties can equally be tuned. The aim therefore of this fundamental project is twofold :

  • To study the thermodynamic and mechanical properties of selected flexible MOFs in view of (i) establishing pore volume phase diagrams as a function of pressure and temperature, (ii) determining the transition energies between the various phases and (iii) characterizing the structural behaviour under operating conditions up to high temperature and moderate pressure;
  • To evaluate the possibility of using these materials for mechanical storage of energy as dampers or springs.

This challenging interdisciplinary project that involves the synthesis of materials, the characterization of the properties of interest and modeling, will be conducted by a subtle combination of innovative experimental tools and advanced molecular simulation approaches, which is expected to yield breakthrough in this domain. It will also bring microscopic insight into the mechanism in play during the phase transition under thermal and mechanical stimuli.



  • Isabelle BEURROIES
  • Renaud DENOYEL
  • Philip LLEWELLYN


  • Guillaume MAURIN
  • Pascal YOT


  • Thomas DEVIC
  • Christian SERRE


  • Kick-off : 28 Jan 2013, in Marseille
  • 6 months : 27 Sept 2013, in Montpellier
  • 12 month telephone meeting : 16 March 2014
  • 18 months : 22 Sept 2014, in Versailles
  • Mid-term review : 2 March 2015, in Paris
  • 24 month telephone meeting : 18 March 2015
  • 36 month meeting : December 2015, in Versailles

Publications in MODS

  • The Direct Heat Measurement of Mechanical Energy Storage Metal–Organic Frameworks, Rodriguez, J., Beurroies, I., Loiseau, T., Denoyel, R., Llewellyn P.L., Angewandte Chemie Int. Ed., 2015, 54(15), 4626-30 (10.1002/anie.201411202). [web site]
  • Mechanical energy storage performances of an Aluminum Fumarate Metal–Organic Framework, P. G. Yot,   L. Vanduyfhuys,   E. Alvarez,   J. Rodriguez,   J.-P. Itié,   P. Fabry,   N. Guillou,   T. Devic,   I. Beurroies,   P. L. Llewellyn,   V. Van Speybroeck,   C. Serre, G. Maurin, Chemical Science, 2015, Accepted Manuscript (DOI: 10.1039/C5SC02794B) [web link here]
  • Thermodynamics of the structural transition in Metal-Organic Frameworks, J. Rodriguez, I. Beurroies, M.-V. Coulet, P. Fabry, T. Devic, C. Serre, R. Denoyel, P. L. Llewellyn, Dalton Transactions, 2015, (DOI: 10.1039/C5DT03591K)
  • Metal–organic frameworks as potential shock absorbers: the case of the highly flexible MIL-53(Al), P.G. Yot, Z. Boudene, J. Macia, D. Granier, L. Vanduyfhuys, T. Verstraelen, V. Van Speybroeck, T. Devic, C. Serre, G. Férey, N. Stock, G. Maurin, Chem. Commun., 2014, 50, 9462-9464.
  • Guest-modulation of the mechanical properties of flexible porous metal–organic frameworks, Q. Ma, Q. Yang, A. Ghoufi, K. Yang, M. Lei, G. Férey, C. Zhong, G. Maurin, J. Mater. Chem. A 2014, 2, 9691-9698.
  • Characterisation of MOF materials by thermomechanical methods, I. Beurroies, R. Denoyel, B. Kuchta, P. Llewellyn, C. Serre, Proceedings of the Fifth Biot Conference on Poromechanics, Edited by C. Hellmich, B. Pichler and D. Adam, American Society of Civil Engineers, 2013, pp641-647