Catalytic reduction of dinitrogen to ammonia using molybdenum porphyrin complexes†
Porphyrin complexes are well-known in O2 and CO2 reduction, but their application to N2 reduction is less developed. Here, we show that oxo and nitrido complexes of molybdenum supported by tetramesitylporphyrin (TMP) are effective precatalysts for catalytic N2 reduction to ammonia, verified by 15N2 labeling studies and other control experiments. Spectroscopic and electrochemical studies illuminate some relevant thermodynamic parameters, including the N–H bond dissociation free energy of (TMP)MoNH (43 ± 2 kcal mol−1). We place these results in the context of other work on homogeneous N2 reduction catalysis.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Sustainable nitrogen activation