Synthesis of Ruthenium Complexes for the Oxidation of Alcohols, Olefins, Sulfides and Amines
Mentor:J. Henry Acquaye, Professor, University of Redlands
Research in the development of oxidation catalysts, which could be tuned to control chemoselectivity and stereoselectivity is a valuable endeavor. Ruthenium complexes with a variety of ligands have been employed as oxidation catalysts to selectivity oxidize substrates since 1953. The complexes trans-[Ru(Bisquin)(H2O)2](PF6)2 and trans-[Ru(Bisnaph)(H2O)2] (where bisquin is N,N’-bis(2-quinolinecarbaldene)-1,2-phenylenediimine and bisnaph is N,N’-bis(1-hydroxy-2-naphthalenecarbaldene)-1,2-phenylenediimine) have been synthesized and characterized by use of FT-IR, UV-vis-spectroscopy, cyclic voltammetry and X-ray crystal structure determination. The reactivity of the complexes in the oxidation of styrene (using DAIB as primary oxidant) were quantified using gas chromatography techniques. Initial results for selective epoxidation of styrene suggested catalytic activity of both complexes.