Dynamics and the Regiochemistry of Nitration of Toluene.
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The regiochemistry of the nitration of toluene by NO2+BF4- in dichloromethane is accurately predicted from trajectories in explicit solvent. Simpler models and approaches based on transition state theory fail to account for the selectivity. Potential of mean force calculations find no free-energy barrier for reaction of the toluene/NO2+BF4- encounter complex, yet the trajectories require an extraordinary 3 ps to descend an exergonic slope. The selectivity is decided late in long trajectories because their completion requires solvent and counterion reorganization. The normal descriptive understanding of the regiochemistry based on transition-state energies is unsupported.
author list (cited authors)
Nieves-Quinones, Y., & Singleton, D. A
complete list of authors
Nieves-Quinones, Yexenia||Singleton, Daniel A