Physical Chemistry

Room-Temperature Quantitative Quantum Sensing of Lithium Ions with a Radical-Embedded Metal‒Organic Framework



Recent advancements in quantum sensing have sparked transformative detection technologies with high sensitivity, precision, and spatial resolution. Owing to their atomic-level tunability, molecular qubits and ensembles thereof are promising candidates for sensing chemical analytes. Here, we show quantum sensing of lithium ions in solution at room temperature with an ensemble of organic radicals integrated in a microporous metal‒organic framework (MOF). The organic radicals exhibit electron spin coherence and microwave addressability at room temperature, thus behaving as qubits. The high surface area of the MOF promotes accessibility of the guest analytes to the organic qubits, enabling unambiguous identification of lithium ions and quantitative measurement of their concentration through relaxometric and hyperfine spectroscopic methods based on electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy. The sensing principle presented in this work is applicable to other metal ions with nonzero nuclear spin.


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Supplementary material

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Supporting Information
Full descriptions of experimental methods, electron diffraction micrographs, PXRD patterns, thermogravimetric analysis, N2 adsorption isotherm, quantitative EPR analysis, solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopic studies, pulsed EPR characterization results, and theoretical analysis for quantitative sensing by CP-ESEEM (PDF)