Inorganic chemistry

Metal coordination by sterically hindered heterocyclic ligands, including 2-vinylpyridine, assessed by investigation of cobaloximes.

PMID 16602795


Structural and 1H NMR data have been obtained for cobaloximes with the bulkiest substituted pyridines reported so far. We have isolated in noncoordinating solvents the complexes CH3Co(DH)2L (methylcobaloxime, where DH = the monoanion of dimethylglyoxime) with L = sterically hindered N-donor ligands: quinoline, 4-CH3quinoline, 2,4-(CH3)2pyridine, and 2-R-pyridine (R = CH3, OCH3, CH2CH3, CH=CH2). We have found that the Co-N(ax) bond is very long in the structurally characterized complexes. In particular, CH3Co(DH)2(4-CH3quinoline) has a longer Co-N(ax) bond (2.193(3) A) than any reported for methylcobaloximes. The main cause of the long bonds is unambiguously identified as the steric bulk of L by the fairly linear relationship found for Co-N(ax) distance vs CCA (calculated cone angle, CCA, a computed measure of bulk) over an extensive series of methylcobaloximes. The linear relationship improves if L basicity (quantified by pKa) is taken into account. In anhydrous CDCl3 at 25 degrees C, all complexes except the 2-aminopyridine adduct exhibit 1H NMR spectra consistent with partial dissociation of L to form the methylcobaloxime dimer. 1H NMR experiments at -20 degrees C allowed us to assess qualitatively the relative binding ability of L as follows: 2,4-(CH3)2pyridine > 4-CH3quinoline approximately = quinoline approximately = 2-CH3pyridine > 2-CH3Opyridine > 2-CH3CH2pyridine > 2-CH2=CHpyridine. The broadness of the 1H NMR signals at 25 degrees C suggests a similar order for the ligand exchange rate. The lack of dissociation by 2-aminopyridine is attributed to an intramolecular hydrogen bond between the NH2 group and an oxime O atom. The weaker than expected binding of 2-vinylpyridine relative to the Co-N(ax) bond length is attributed to rotation of the 2-vinyl group required for this bulky ligand to bind to the metal center, a conclusion supported by pronounced changes in 2-vinylpyridine signals upon coordination.