What is the real steric impact of triphenylphosphite? Solid-state and solution structural studies of cis- and trans-isomers of M(CO)(4)[P(OPh)(3)](2) (M = Mo and W)
Additional Document Info
The steric requirements for the triphenylphosphite ligand in several molybdenum and tungsten carbonyl derivatives have been shown by X-ray crystallography to exceed the original Tolman's cone angle of 128. That is, due to various accessible conformers possible for P(OPh)3, solid-state data predict a considerably larger cone angle for the ligand of between 140 and 160. Importantly, the solution behavior of cis-M(CO)4[P(OPh)3]2 (M = Mo or W), coupled with similarly reported observations on a series of cis-Mo(CO) 4[PR3]2 derivatives, support this conclusion, for these molecules both undergo thermal rearrangement to the more stable trans-isomers. On the other hand, the electronically similar but sterically much smaller cis-Mo(CO)4[P(OCH2)3CEt]2 complex is thermally stable under much harsher conditions. Furthermore, a comprehensive survey of structural data for transition-metal-triphenylphosphite derivatives available in the Cambridge Crystallographic Database reveals that most molecules display conformations that dictate cone angles much greater than that originally suggested by Tolman. 2007 American Chemical Society.