Synthesis, bonding properties and ether activation reactivity of cyclobutadienyl-ligated hybrid uranocenes

Tsoureas, Nikolaos, Mansikkamäki, Akseli and Layfield, Richard A (2021) Synthesis, bonding properties and ether activation reactivity of cyclobutadienyl-ligated hybrid uranocenes. Chemical Science, 12 (8). pp. 2948-2954. ISSN 2041-6520

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A series of hybrid uranocenes consisting of uranium(iv) sandwiched between cyclobutadienyl (Cb) and cyclo-octatetraenyl (COT) ligands has been synthesized, structurally characterized and studied computationally. The dimetallic species [(η4-Cb′′′′)(η8-COT)U(μ:η2:η8-COT)U(THF)(η4-Cb′′′′)] (1) forms concomitantly with, and can be separated from, monometallic [(η4-Cb′′′′)U(THF)(η8-COT)] (2) (Cb′′′′ = 1,2,3,4-tetrakis(trimethylsilyl)cyclobutadienyl, COT = cyclo-octatetraenyl). In toluene solution at room temperature,1dissociates into2and the unsolvated uranocene [(η4-Cb′′′′)U(η8-COT)] (3). By applying a high vacuum, both1and2can be converted directly into3. Using bulky silyl substituents on the COT ligand allowed isolation of base-free [(η4-Cb′′′′)U{η8-1,4-(iPr3Si)2C8H6}] (4), with compounds3and4being new members of the bis(annulene) family of actinocenes and the first to contain a cyclobutadienyl ligand. Computational studies show that the bonding in the hybrid uranocenes3and4has non-negligible covalency. New insight into actinocene bonding is provided by the complementary interactions of the different ligands with uranium, whereby the 6d orbitals interact most strongly with the cyclobutadienyl ligand and the 5f orbitals do so with the COT ligands. The redox-neutral activation of diethyl ether by [(η4-Cb′′′′)U(η8-C8H8)] is also described and represents a uranium-cyclobutadienyl cooperative process, potentially forming the basis of further small-molecule activation chemistry.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Life Sciences > Chemistry
SWORD Depositor: Mx Elements Account
Depositing User: Mx Elements Account
Date Deposited: 24 Sep 2021 13:32
Last Modified: 30 Nov 2021 16:39

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