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Reactivity of Copper(II)-alkylperoxo Complexes

Tano, T.; Ertem, M. Z.; Yamaguchi, S.; Kunishita, A.; Sugimoto, H.; Fujieda, N.; Ogura, T.; Cramer, C. J.; Itoh, S.
Dalton Trans. 2011, 40, 10326 (doi:10.1039/c1dt10656b).

Copper(II) complexes 1a and 1b, supported by tridentate ligand bpa [bis(2-pyridylmethyl)amine] and tetradentate ligand tpa [tris(2-pyridylmethyl)amine], respectively, react with cumene hydroperoxide (CmOOH) in the presence of triethylamine in CH3CN to provide the corresponding copper(II) cumylperoxo complexes 2a and 2b, the formation of which has been confirmed by resonance Raman and ESI-MS analyses using 18O-labeled CmOOH. UV-vis and ESR spectra as well as DFT calculations indicate that 2a has a 5-coordinate square-pyramidal structure involving CmOO- at an equatorial position and one solvent molecule at an axial position at low temperature (90o C), whereas a 4-coordinate square-planar structure that has lost the axial solvent ligand is predominant at higher temperatures (above 0o C). Complex 2b, on the other hand, has a typical trigonal bipyramidal structure with the tripodal tetradentate tpa ligand, where the cumylperoxo ligand occupies an axial position. Both cumylperoxo copper(II) complexes 2a and 2b are fairly stable at ambient temperature, but decompose at a higher temperature (60o C) in CH3CN. Detailed product analyses and DFT studies indicate that the self-decomposition involves O-O bond homolytic cleavage of the peroxo moiety; concomitant hydrogen-atom abstraction from the solvent is partially involved. In the presence of 1,4-cyclohexadiene (CHD), the cumylperoxo complexes react smoothly at 30o C to give benzene as one product. Detailed product analyses and DFT studies indicate that reaction with CHD involves concerted O-O bond homolytic cleavage and hydrogen-atom abstraction from the substrate, with the oxygen atom directly bonded to the copper(II) ion (proximal oxygen) involved in the C-H bond activation step.