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Issue 19, 2016
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Niobium tetrahalide complexes with neutral diphosphine ligands

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The reactions of NbCl4 with diphosphine ligands o-C6H4(PMe2)2, Me2PCH2CH2PMe2 or Et2PCH2CH2PEt2 in a 1 : 2 molar ratio in MeCN solution produced eight-coordinate [NbCl4(diphosphine)2]. [NbBr4(diphosphine)2] (diphosphine = o-C6H4(PMe2)2 or Me2PCH2CH2PMe2) were made similarly from NbBr4. X-ray crystal structures show that [NbCl4{o-C6H4(PMe2)2}2] has a dodecahedral geometry, but the complexes with dimethylene-backboned diphosphines are distorted square antiprisms. The Nb–P distances and <P–Nb–P angles are very similar in the two types, but Nb–Cl distances are ∼0.1 Å longer in the square antiprismatic complexes. These paramagnetic (d1) complexes were also characterised by microanalysis, magnetic measurements, IR and UV-visible spectroscopy. Using a 1 : 1 molar ratio of NbCl4 : diphosphine (diphosphine = Me2PCH2CH2PMe2, Et2PCH2CH2PEt2, Cy2PCH2CH2PCy2 and Ph2PCH2CH2CH2PPh2) afforded [NbCl4(diphosphine)], and [NbBr4(Me2PCH2CH2PMe2)] was obtained similarly. These 1 : 1 complexes are unstable in solution, preventing X-ray crystallographic study, but based upon their diamagnetism, IR, UV-visible and 31P{1H} NMR spectra, they are formulated as halide-bridged dimers [(diphosphine)X2Nb(μ-X)4NbX2(diphosphine)], with single Nb–Nb bonds and chelating diphosphines. The Nb(IV) complexes are prone to hydrolysis and oxidation in solution and the structures of the Nb(V) complexes [NbBr4(Me2PCH2CH2PMe2)2][NbOBr4(MeCN)] with a dodecahedral cation, and [{NbOCl3{Et2P(CH2)2PEt2}}2{μ-Et2P(CH2)2PEt2}] which contains seven-coordinate Nb(V) centres with a symmetrical diphosphine bridge, are reported. The structure of niobium tetrabromide, conveniently made from NbCl4 and BBr3, is a chain polymer with edge-linked NbBr6 octahedra and alternating long and short Nb–Nb distances, the latter ascribed to Nb–Nb bonds.

Graphical abstract: Niobium tetrahalide complexes with neutral diphosphine ligands

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Article information

21 Mar 2016
08 Apr 2016
First published
12 Apr 2016

Dalton Trans., 2016,45, 8192-8200
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Niobium tetrahalide complexes with neutral diphosphine ligands

S. L. Benjamin, Y. Chang, A. L. Hector, M. Jura, W. Levason, G. Reid and G. Stenning, Dalton Trans., 2016, 45, 8192
DOI: 10.1039/C6DT01099G

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