Ruthenium complexes featuring cooperative phosphine–pyridine–iminophosphorane (PNN) ligands: synthesis, reactivity and catalytic activity
The coordination to ruthenium(II) centres of two phosphine–pyridine–iminophosphorane ligands LR (PPh2CH2(C6H3N)CH2NPR3, R = Ph or Cy) differing by the nature of the substituent of the PN phosphorus was explored. Coordination to [RuCl2(PPh3)3] afforded the complexes [RuLRCl2(PPh3)] that were successfully deprotonated at the acidic phosphinomethyl position. With LCy, coordination led to a mixture of two isomers. The complexes [RuLRHCl(PPh3)] were similarly obtained from [RuHCl(PPh3)3]. The stability of these complexes depends on the ligand substitution pattern; with LPh a CH activation process took place, while [RuLCyHCl(PPh3)] was thermally stable. Deprotonation of this latter complex was achieved and gave a catalytically competent species for the acceptorless dehydrogenative coupling of alcohols.