Investigation of the [Cp*Mo(PMe<inf>3</inf>)<inf>3</inf>H] <sup>n+</sup> (n = 0, 1) redox pair: Dynamic processes on very different time scales

Miguel Baya, Pavel A. Dub, Jennifer Houghton, Jean Claude Daran, Natalia V. Belkova, Elena S. Shubina, Una M. Epstein, Agustí Lledós, Rinaldo Poli

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22 Citations (Scopus)


The compound [Cp*Mo(PMe3)3H] (1) is reversibly oxidized at E1/2 = -1.40 V vs ferrocene in MeCN. Its oxidation with Cp2FePF6 yields thermally stable [Cp*Mo(PMe 3)3H]PF6 (2), which has been isolated and characterized by IR and EPR spectroscopy and by single-crystal X-ray diffraction. The 1H and 1P NMR spectra of 1 show two types of PMe3 ligands in a 1:2 ratio at low temperature, but only one average signal at room temperature, with activation parameters of ΔH ‡ = 11.7(3) kcal mor-1 and ΔS ‡ = -3(1) eu for the exchange process. Although only one species is evidenced by NMR for 1 and by EPR for 2, the solution IR spectra of each complex show two bands in the v(Mo-H) region (1, major at 1794 cm -1 and minor at ca. 1730 cm-1; 2, ca. 1800 and 1770 cm-1 with approximately equal intensity), the position and relative intensity being little dependent on the solvent. A thorough DFT investigation suggests that these are different rotamers involving different relative orientations of the Cp* ring and the PMe3 ligands in these complexes. This ring rotation process is very rapid on the NMR and EPR time scale but slow on the IR time scale. The X-ray data and the theoretical calculations suggest the presence of weak Mo-H⋯ F interactions in compound 2. The possibility of PMe3 dissociation, as well as other intramolecular rearrangements, for 1 and 2 is excluded by experimental and computational studies. Protonation of 1 yields [Cp*Mo(PMe 3)3H2]+ (3), which also reveals a dynamic process interconverting the two inequivalent H ligands and the three PMe3 ligands (two sets in a 1:2 ratio in the frozen structure) on the NMR time scale (activation parameters of ΔH‡ = 9.3(1) kcal/mol and ΔH‡ = -4.1(4) eu). A DFT study suggests that this exchange process occurs via a low-energy symmetric dihydride intermediate and not through a dihydrogen complex. © 2009 American Chemical Society.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-220
JournalInorganic Chemistry
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jan 2009


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