Activation of olefin metathesis complexes containing unsymmetrical unsaturated N-heterocyclic carbenes by copper and gold transmetalation†
The activation of ruthenium-indenylidene complexes containing two unsymmetrical unsaturated N-heterocyclic carbenes (u2-NHCs) by a transmetalation process is reported. The use of copper(I) or gold(I) chlorides promotes the rapid trapping of one NHC ligand, which releases the catalytically active Ru-species. Impressive initiation rates with full-conversions are observed within one minute. This practical protocol demonstrates excellent catalytic performances in various ring-closing metathesis (RCM) and self-metathesis (SM) reactions.