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Aqueous Phase C−H Bond Oxidation Reaction of Arylalkanes Catalyzed by a Water-Soluble Cationic Ru(III) Complex [(pymox-Me2)2RuCl2]+BF4

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journal contribution
posted on 02.04.2009, 00:00 by Chae S. Yi, Ki-Hyeok Kwon, Do W. Lee
The cationic complex [(pymox-Me2)RuCl2]+BF4 was found to be a highly effective catalyst for the C−H bond oxidation reaction of arylalkanes in water. For example, the treatment of ethylbenzene (1.0 mmol) with t-BuOOH (3.0 mmol) and 1.0 mol % of the Ru catalyst in water (3 mL) cleanly produced PhCOCH3 at room temperature. Both a large kinetic isotope effect (kH/kD = 14) and a relatively large Hammett value (ρ = −1.1) suggest a solvent-caged oxygen rebounding mechanism via a Ru(IV)-oxo intermediate species.