Calculation of a Methane C-H Oxidative Addition Trajectory: Comparison to Experiment and Methane Activation by High-Valent Complexes


This article discusses the calculation of a methane C-H oxidative addition trajectory.

Creator(s): Cundari, Thomas R., 1964-
Creation Date: January 1994
UNT College of Arts and Sciences
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Creator (Author):
Cundari, Thomas R., 1964-

University of North Texas; Memphis State University

Publisher Info:
Publisher Name: American Chemical Society
Place of Publication: [Washington, DC]
  • Creation: January 1994

This article discusses the calculation of a methane C-H oxidative addition trajectory.

Department: Chemistry

Reprinted with permission from the Journal of the American Chemical Society. Copyright 1994 American Chemical Society.


Abstract: An effective core potential (ECP), parallel supercomputing study of methane activation by 14-electron, Ir(PH₃)₂(X) complexes (X = H, Cl) is presented. Considerable weakening of the coordinated methane C-H bond occurs upon formation of an ɳ²-CH coordinated (X)(PH₃)₂Ir•••HCH₃ adduct. A more strongly bound adduct (with greater weakening of the coordinated C-H bond) occurs when X = Cl versus X = H. The calculated Ir(PH₃)₂(H) + CH₄ → Ir(PH₃)₂(H)₂(Me) reaction enthalpy is -12.8 kcal mol⁻¹, and -41.6 kcal mol⁻¹ for the chloro analogue. The intrinsic reaction coordinate is calculated and compared to an experimental trajectory. Analysis of the wave function along the intrinsic reaction coordinate (IRC) suggests that although donation of electron density from methane to metal is essential for adduct formation, it is not until backdonation to σ* сʜ increases that the C-H bond is activated and cleaved. The electronic and molecular structure of the reacting system along the IRC suggest a two-stage mechanism: substrate to complex donation is important in the early part of the reaction (electrophilic stage) while complex to substrate backdonation is necessary later on (nucleophilic stage) for C-H scission. Finally, comparison of IRCs for low- and high-valent methane-activating complexes shows similar topology in the early portion of the activation event; differentiation between oxidative addition and σ-bond metathesis occurs at the point at which there is a shift from the electrophilic to nucleophilic stage of the reaction.

Physical Description:

8 p.

Keyword(s): methane | high-valent complexes | effective core potentials | intrinsic reaction coordinate
Source: Journal of the American Chemical Society, 1994, Washington DC: American Chemical Society, pp. 340-347
UNT College of Arts and Sciences
UNT Scholarly Works
  • DOI: 10.1021/ja00080a039
  • ARK: ark:/67531/metadc107777
Resource Type: Article
Format: Text
Access: Public
Publication Title: Journal of the American Chemical Society
Volume: 116
Issue: 1
Page Start: 340
Page End: 347
Peer Reviewed: Yes