The C−H and α(C−X) Bond Dissociation Enthalpies of Toluene, C6H5-CH2X (X = F, Cl), and Their Substituted Derivatives:  A DFT Study

The homolytic C−H bond dissociation enthalpies (BDEs) of toluene and its para- and meta-substituted derivatives have been estimated by using the (RO)B3LYP/6-311++G(2df,2p)//(U)B3LYP/6-311G(d,p) procedure. The performance of two other hybrid functionals of DFT, namely, B3PWP91 and O3LYP, has also been evaluated using the same basis sets and molecules. Our computed results are compared with the available experimental values and are found to be in good agreement. The (RO)B3LYP and (RO)O3LYP procedures are found to produce reliable BDEs for the C−H bonds in toluene and the C−X (X = F, Cl) bond in α-substituted toluene (C6H5−CH2X) and their substituted derivatives. The substituent effect on the BDE values has been analyzed in terms of the ground-state effect and the radical effect. The effect of polarization of the C−H bond on the substituent effect is also analyzed. The BDE(C−H) and BDE(C−X) values for α-substituted (X = F and Cl) toluenes with a set of para substituents are presented for the first time.