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Issue 38, 2014
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Synthesis of N,N,O-chelate zinc and aluminum complexes and their catalysis in the ring-opening polymerization of ε-caprolactone and rac-lactide

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Abstract

Zinc and aluminum complexes supported by N,N,O-chelate ligands were synthesized and characterized. The zinc complexes [Zn(Et){2-{OC(R1)[double bond, length as m-dash]CH}-6-(3,5-Me2C3HN2)C5H3N}]2 (R1 = Ph, 1a; R1 = But, 1b) were synthesized by reaction of ligand precursors 2-{R1C(O)CH2}-6-(3,5-Me2C3HN2)C5H3N (R1 = Ph, HL1; R1 = But, HL2) with ZnEt2. The aluminum complexes [Al(R)2{2-{OC(Ph)[double bond, length as m-dash]CH}-6-(3,5-Me2C3HN2)C5H3N}] (R = Me, 2a; R = Et, 2b) were synthesized by reaction of HL1 with AlMe3 or AlEt3. Similar treatment of the ligand precursor 2-{Ph2C(OH)CH2}-6-(3,5-Me2C3HN2)C5H3N (HL3) with AlMe3 or AlEt3 afforded aluminum complexes [Al(R)2{2-{OC(Ph)2CH2}-6-(3,5-Me2C3HN2)C5H3N}] (R = Me, 3a; R = Et, 3b). The complexes were characterized by 1H and 13C{1H} NMR spectroscopy, elemental analyses and single crystal X-ray diffraction (for 1a, 1b, 2b and 3a). All the complexes are active to catalyze the ring-opening polymerization of ε-caprolactone in the presence of BnOH, leading to polycaprolactone with good molecular weight control and relatively narrow molecular weight distribution. The zinc complexes/BnOH showed good catalytic activity for the ring-opening polymerization of rac-lactide, displaying good molecular weight control and very narrow molecular weight distributions. The PLA catalyzed by complex 1a/BnOH showed somewhat hetero-stereoselectivity with Pr up to 0.73 when the polymerization was performed in THF at 0 °C. Complex 1a/BnOH also catalyzed block copolymerization of ε-CL and rac-LA with good molecular weight control of the polymer. Kinetic studies of the polymerization reactions were performed.

Graphical abstract: Synthesis of N,N,O-chelate zinc and aluminum complexes and their catalysis in the ring-opening polymerization of ε-caprolactone and rac-lactide

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Publication details

The article was received on 07 May 2014, accepted on 28 Jun 2014 and first published on 02 Jul 2014


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C4DT01364F
Citation: Dalton Trans., 2014,43, 14470-14480
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    Synthesis of N,N,O-chelate zinc and aluminum complexes and their catalysis in the ring-opening polymerization of ε-caprolactone and rac-lactide

    W. Kong, Z. Chai and Z. Wang, Dalton Trans., 2014, 43, 14470
    DOI: 10.1039/C4DT01364F

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