Protonation of the Dinitrogen-Reduction Catalyst [HIPTN3N]MoIII Investigated by ENDOR Spectroscopy Academic Article uri icon


  • Dinitrogen is reduced to ammonia by the molybdenum complex of L = [HIPTN3N](3-) [Mo; HIPT = 3,5-(2,4,6-iPr3C6H2)2C6H3]. The mechanism by which this occurs involves the stepwise addition of proton/electron pairs, but how the first pair converts MoN2 to MoN ═ NH remains uncertain. The first proton of reduction might bind either at Nβ of N2 or at one of the three amido nitrogen (N(am)) ligands. Treatment of MoCO with [2,4,6-Me3C5H3N]BAr'4 [Ar' = 2,3-(CF3)2C6H3] in the absence of reductant generates HMoCO(+), whose electron paramagnetic resonance spectrum has greatly reduced g anisotropy relative to MoCO. (2)H Mims pulsed electron nuclear double-resonance spectroscopy of (2)HMoCO(+) shows a signal that simulations show to have a hyperfine tensor with an isotropic coupling, aiso((2)H) = -0.22 MHz, and a roughly dipolar anisotropic interaction, T((2)H) = [-0.48, -0.93, 1.42] MHz. The simulations show that the deuteron is bound to N(am), near the Mo equatorial plane, not along the normal, and at a distance of 2.6 Å from Mo, which is nearly identical with the (Nam)(2)H(+)-Mo distance predicted by density functional theory computations.

author list (cited authors)

  • Kinney, R. A., McNaughton, R. L., Chin, J. M., Schrock, R. R., & Hoffman, B. M.

publication date

  • January 1, 2010 11:11 AM