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1,4-Shifts in a Dinuclear Ni(I) Biarylyl Complex:  A Mechanistic Study of C−H Bond Activation by Monovalent Nickel

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journal contribution
posted on 31.01.2007, 00:00 by Alana L. Keen, Meghan Doster, Samuel A. Johnson
The known aryne complex (PEt3)2Ni(η2-C6H2-4,5-F2) (1a) reacts with a catalytic amount of Br2Ni(PEt3)2 over 1% Na/Hg to afford the dinuclear Ni(I) biarylyl complex [(PEt3)2Ni]2(μ-η11-3,4-F2C6H2-3‘,4‘-F2C6H2) (2a), which results from a combination of C−C bond formation and C−H bond rearrangement. The dinuclear benzyne [(PEt3)2Ni]2(μ-η22-C6H2-4,5-F2) (3) was obtained by the reaction of 1a with a stoichiometric amount of Br2Ni(PEt3)2 over excess 1% Na/Hg, and 3 was found to catalyze the conversion of 1a to 2a. The reaction of 1a with B(C6F5)3 produced the trinuclear complex (PEt3)3Ni33112-4,5-F2C6H2)(μ3112-4,5-F2C6H2-4‘,5‘-F2C6H2) (6). The addition of PEt3 to 6 produced 1 equiv of 1a and 1 equiv of [(PEt3)2Ni]2(μ-η11-4,5-F2C6H2-4‘,5‘-F2C6H2) (7a). Both 6 and 7a were identified as intermediates in the conversion of 1a to 2a. The analogue [(PEt3)(PMe3)Ni]2(μ-η11-4,5-F2C6H2-4‘,5‘-F2C6H2) (7b) was prepared by the addition of PMe3 to 6 and was structurally characterized. NMR spectroscopic evidence identified the additional asymmetric biarylyl [(PEt3)2Ni]2(μ-η11-4,5-F2C6H2-3‘,4‘-F2C6H2) (8a) during the conversion of 1a to 2a. The initial observation of 2 equiv of 8a for every equivalent of 2a produced from solutions of 7a suggests that 8a and 2a are formed from a common intermediate. A crossover labeling experiment shows that the C−H bond rearrangement steps in the conversion of 1a to 2a occur with the intermolecular scrambling of hydrogen and deuterium labels. The evidence collected suggests that Ni(I) complexes are capable of activating aromatic C−H bonds.