Metal-Organic Framework Materials Coupled to Optical Fibers for Chemical Sensing: A Review


Metal-organic frameworks (MOFs), a newer class of crystalline nanoporous materials, have been in the limelight owing to their exceptional tunability for structures and physicochemical properties, and have found successful applications in gas storage, gas separation, and catalysis. The mesmerizing properties of MOFs, especially the extensive and tunable porosity and chemical selectivity, also make them an excellent candidate class as chemo-sensory materials. Moreover, MOF-based sensors have attracted considerable attention in the past decade. Recent literature reviews focused on the progress of MOF-based electronic sensors and luminescent MOF sensors, while sensors exploiting the dielectric properties (refractive index) of MOFs were also demonstrated and discussed very recently. The motivation of this report is to provide, for the first time, a general review on such MOF sensors with a particular focus on miniature optical fiber (OF) based MOF sensors and to demonstrate the promising potential of MOFs as dielectric coatings on OF for highly sensitive chemical sensing. The fundamental principle of OF-MOF sensors relies on the tunability of the refractive index of a MOF, which is dependent on the amount and type of adsorbed guest molecules in the MOF pores. MOF sensors based on different optical sensing principles are reviewed; challenges and perspectives on further research into the field of OF-MOF sensors are also discussed.


Electrical and Computer Engineering

Research Center/Lab(s)

Intelligent Systems Center


National Institutes of Health, Grant 1U01HL152410-01

Keywords and Phrases

Adsorption; Fibers; Gases; Metal-Organic Frameworks; Optical Fiber Sensors; Sensors; Thin Films

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

1558-1748; 1530-437X

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


File Type





© 2021 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), All rights reserved.

Publication Date

15 Sep 2021