Dimeric aluminum-phosphorus compounds as masked frustrated Lewis pairs for small molecule activation

Steffi Roters, Christian Appelt, Hauke Westenberg, Alexander Hepp, J. Chris Slootweg, Koop Lammertsma, Werner Uhl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

124 Citations (Scopus)


Hydroalumination of aryldialkynylphosphines RP(CC-tBu) 2 (R = Ph, Mes) with equimolar quantities of diethylaluminum hydride afforded mixed alkenyl-alkynyl cyclic dimers in which the dative aluminum-phosphorus bonds are geminal to the exocyclic alkenyl groups. Addition of triethylaluminum to isolated 1 (R = Ph) or to the in situ generated species (R = Mes) caused diethylaluminum ethynide elimination to yield the arylethylphosphorus dimers 2 and 3. These possess a chair-like Al 2C2P2 heterocycle with intermolecular Al-P interactions. The boat conformation (4) was obtained by the reaction of tBu-P(CC-tBu)2 with di(tert-butyl)aluminum hydride. Despite being dimeric, 2 behaves as a frustrated Lewis pair and activates small molecules. The reaction with carbon dioxide gave cis/trans isomeric AlPC2O heterocycles that differ only by the configuration of the exocyclic alkenyl unit. Four isomers resulted from the reaction with phenyl isocyanate. This is caused by cis/trans isomerization of the initial CO adduct and subsequent rearrangement to the AlPC2N heterocycle, being the CN adduct.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9033-9045
Number of pages13
JournalDalton Transactions
Issue number30
Publication statusPublished - 14 Aug 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Inorganic Chemistry


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