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Molecular Dynamics of Dimethyldioxirane C–H Oxidation

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posted on 10.03.2016, 00:00 by Zhongyue Yang, Peiyuan Yu, K. N. Houk
We report molecular dynamics simulations of the reaction of dimethyldioxirane (DMDO) with isobutane. The reaction involves hydrogen atom abstraction in the transition state, and trajectories branch to the oxygen rebound pathway, which gives tert-butanol and acetone, or a separated radical pair. In the gas phase, only 10% of the reactive trajectories undergo the oxygen rebound pathway, but this increases to 90% in simulations in an implicit acetone solvent (SMD) because the oxygen rebound becomes barrierless in solution. Short-lived diradical species were observed in the oxygen rebound trajectories. The time gap between C–H bond-breaking and C–O bond formation ranges from 30 to 150 fs, close to the <200 fs lifetime of radical pairs from DMDO hydroxylation of trans-1-phenyl-2-ethylcyclopropane measured by Newcomb.