- The radical mechanism of cobalt(II) porphyrin-catalyzed olefin aziridination and the importance of cooperative H-bonding
- Dalton Transactions
- Volume | Issue number
- 40 | 21
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
- Van 't Hoff Institute for Molecular Sciences (HIMS)
The mechanism of cobalt(II) porphyrin-mediated aziridination of styrene with PhSO2N3 was studied by means of DFT calculations. The computations clearly indicate the involvement of a cobalt 'nitrene radical' intermediate in the Co-II(por)-catalyzed alkene aziridination. The addition of styrene to this species proceeds in a stepwise fashion via radical addition of the 'nitrene radical' C to the C=C double bond of styrene to form a gamma-alkyl radical intermediate D. The thus formed tri-radical species D easily collapses in an almost barrierless ring closure reaction (TS3) to form the aziridine, thereby regenerating the cobalt(II) porphyrin catalyst. The radical addition of the 'nitrene radical' C to the olefin (TS2) proceeds with a comparable barrier as its formation (TS1), thus providing a good explanation for the first order kinetics in both substrates and the catalyst observed experimentally. Formation of C is clearly accelerated by stabilization of C and TS1 via hydrogen bonding between the S=O and N-H units. The computed radical-type mechanism agrees well with all available mechanistic and kinetic information. The computed free energy profile readily explains the superior performance of the Co-II(porAmide) system with H-bond donor functionalities over the non-functionalized Co(TPP).
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