Efficient and selective oxidation of alcohols to carbonyl compounds at room temperature by a ruthenium complex catalyst and hydrogen peroxide†
In this study, convenient and selective oxidation of alcohols using aqueous hydrogen peroxide to yield carbonyl compounds was studied. Using the ruthenium-(4-methylphenyl-2,6-bispydinyl) pyridinedicarboxylate complex [Ru(mpbp)(pydic)] as a catalyst, primary and secondary alcohols were oxidized to aldehydes and ketones at room temperature with a satisfactory yield and excellent selectivity. The influence of various reaction parameters, such as solvent, catalyst and oxidant amount on both the activity and selectivity was also evaluated. Kinetic studies showed that the oxidation of alcohol was first order in terms of the substrate and hydrogen peroxide, and was second order in terms of the catalyst. A plausible mechanism involving ruthenium–oxo species with electrophilic character was proposed based on the in situ UV-vis spectroscopy studies and Hammett plots.