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Dipyrrolyl Precursors to Bisalkoxide Molybdenum Olefin Metathesis Catalysts

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journal contribution
posted on 20.12.2006, 00:00 by A. S. Hock, Richard R. Schrock, Amir H. Hoveyda
Addition of 2 equiv of lithium pyrrolide to Mo(NR)(CHCMe2R‘)(OTf)2(DME) (OTf = OSO2CF3; R = 2,6-i-Pr2C6H3, 1-adamantyl, or 2,6-Br2-4-MeC6H2; R‘ = Me or Ph) produces Mo(NR)(CHCMe2R‘)(NC4H4)2 complexes in good yield. All compounds can be recrystallized readily from toluene or mixtures of pentane and ether and are sensitive to air and moisture. An X-ray structure of a 2,6-diisopropylphenylimido species shows it to be an unsymmetric dimer, {Mo(NAr)(syn-CHCMe2Ph)(η5-NC4H4)(η1-NC4H4)}{Mo(NAr)(syn-CHCMe2Ph)(η1-NC4H4)2}, in which the nitrogen in the η5-pyrrolyl bound to one Mo behaves as a donor to the other Mo. All complexes are fluxional on the NMR time scale at room temperature, with one symmetric species being observed on the NMR time scale at 50 °C in toluene-d8. The dimers react with PMe3 (at Mo) or B(C6F5)3 (at a η5-NC4H4 nitrogen) to give monomeric products in high yield. They also react rapidly with 2 equiv of monoalcohols (e.g., Me3COH or (CF3)2MeCOH) or 1 equiv of a biphenol or binaphthol to give 2 equiv of pyrrole and bisalkoxide or diolate complexes in ∼100% yield.