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Toward an Understanding of the Ambiguous Electron Paramagnetic Resonance Spectra of the Iminoxy Radical from o‑Fluorobenzaldehyde Oxime: Density Functional Theory and ab Initio Studies

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journal contribution
posted on 27.08.2015, 00:00 by Maciej Witwicki, Julia Jezierska
Iminoxy radicals (R1R2CNO) possess an inherent ability to exist as E and Z isomers. Although isotropic hyperfine couplings for the species with R1 = H allow one to distinguish between E and Z, unequivocal assignment of the parameters observed in the EPR spectra of the radicals without the hydrogen atom at the azomethine carbon to the right isomer is not a simple task. The iminoxyl derived from o-fluoroacetophenone oxime (R1 = CH3 and R2 = o-FC6H5) appears to be a case in point. Moreover, for its two isomers the rotation of the o-FC6H5 group brings into existence the syn and anti conformers, depending on the mutual orientation of the F atom and CNO group, making a description of hyperfine couplings to structure even more challenging. To accomplish this, a vast array of theoretical methods (DFT, OO-SCS-MP2, QCISD) was used to calculate the isotropic hyperfine couplings. The comparison between experimental and theoretical values revealed that the E isomer is the dominant radical form, for which a fast interconversion between anti and syn conformers is expected. In addition, the origin of the significant AF increase with solvent polarity was analyzed.