Synthesis, characterisation and reactivity studies of unusual ligand-stabilised p-block element complexes

Lead Research Organisation: University of St Andrews
Department Name: Chemistry


The p-block of the periodic table contains several cheap and Earth abundant elements commonly used for synthesis and catalysis. Main group chemistry has seen great advances in the past two decades with the realisation of new concepts in the stabilisation of highly unusual compounds by novel, sterically demanding groups and ligands, and the implementation of novel approaches to reactivity, for example with low oxidation state species and frustrated Lewis pairs. This project will study several aspects of novel chemistry with ligand-stabilised p-block elements, mainly of groups 13-15 of the periodic table. This will include the synthesis, characterisation and associated reactivity studies of low oxidation state compounds stabilised by a series of sterically demanding ligands such as B-diketiminates, anionic iminophosphoranes, phosphinoamides and other N- and C-ligands, e.g. N-heterocyclic carbenes. This is envisaged to yield novel compounds with element-element bonds and/or non-bonding electrons such as lone pairs. Another concept to be tested will be the synthesis, characterisation and reactivity of p-block element hydride sources, ideally based on non-metal systems (e.g. phosphoranes). All project will include the synthesis and characterisation (e.g. by NMR spectroscopy and X-ray single crystal diffraction studies) of new and novel compounds and the study of their further reactivity. Sterically demanding ligands will be employed to stabilise unusual inorganic and organometallic molecular fragments. Ligands can be tailored with respect to their steric and electronic parameters. The reactivity of new species will be investigated for example towards a range of organic substrates and small molecules including industrially relevant gases.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
EP/R513337/1 01/10/2018 30/09/2023
2090097 Studentship EP/R513337/1 27/09/2018 31/03/2022 Connor Bourne