A protecting group strategy to access stable lacunary polyoxomolybdates for introducing multinuclear metal clusters†
Although metal-containing polyoxomolybdates (molybdenum oxide clusters) exhibit outstanding catalytic properties, their precise synthetic method has not yet been developed. This is mainly because the very low stability of the multivacant lacunary polyoxomolybdates limited their use as synthetic precursors. Here, we present a “protecting group strategy” in polyoxometalate synthesis and successfully develop an efficient method for synthesising multinuclear metal-containing polyoxomolybdates using pyridine as a protecting group for unstable trivacant lacunary Keggin-type polyoxomolybdate [PMo9O34]9−. Specifically, tetranuclear cubane- and planar-type manganese clusters were selectively synthesised in the polyoxomolybdates using the present method. The importance of this work is that, in addition to being the first practical way of utilizing multivacant lacunary polyoxomolybdates as precursors, this new “protecting group strategy” will make it possible to produce polyoxometalates with unexplored structures and properties.