Dinitrogen functionalization with bis(cyclopentadienyl) complexes of zirconium and hafnium

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The rich chemistry of substituted bis(cyclopentadienyl)zirconium and hafnium complexes bearing side-on coordinated dinitrogen ligands is highlighted in this Perspective. Our studies in this area were initially motivated by the desire to understand side-on vs. end-on dinitrogen coordination in bimetallic zirconocene and hafnocene N2 compounds. In the cases where η22-dinitrogen compounds were isolated, both structural and computational data have established significant imido character in the metal-nitrogen bonds. This additional bonding interaction, which is diminished in end-on complexes bearing both terminal and bridging N2 ligands, facilitates dinitrogen functionalization by non-polar reagents including dihydrogen, carbon-hydrogen bonds and weak Brønsted acids such as water and ethanol. In hafnocene chemistry, where unwanted side-on, end-on isomerization is suppressed, cycloaddition of phenylisocyanate to coordinated N2 has also been accomplished. For N-H bond forming reactions involving H2, kinetic measurements, in addition to isotopic labelling and computational studies, are consistent with dinitrogen functionalization by 1,2-addition involving a highly ordered, four-centred transition structure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)16-25
Number of pages10
JournalDalton Transactions
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2007
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Inorganic Chemistry


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