Building a better salt trap: Scientists synt…

Building a better salt trap: Scientists synthesize a molecular ‘cage’ to trap chloride

Indiana University researchers have created a powerful new molecule for the extraction of salt from liquid. The work has potential to help increase the amount of drinkable water on Earth.

Built using chemical bonds previously regarded as too weak, the new molecule is about ten billion times improved compared to a similar structure created over 10 years ago at IU. The molecules’ design was reported May 23 in the journal Science.

“If you were to place one-millionth of a gram of this molecule in a metric ton of water, 100 percent of them will still be able to capture a salt,” said Yun Liu, who led the study as a Ph.D. student in the lab of Amar Flood, the James F. Jackson Professor of Chemistry and Luther Dana Waterman Professor in the IU Bloomington College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Chemistry.

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