Issue 4, 2022

A generalized kinetic model for compartmentalization of organometallic catalysis


Compartmentalization is an attractive approach to enhance catalytic activity by retaining reactive intermediates and mitigating deactivating pathways. Such a concept has been well explored in biochemical and more recently, organometallic catalysis to ensure high reaction turnovers with minimal side reactions. However, the scarcity of theoretical frameworks towards confined organometallic chemistry impedes broader utility for the implementation of compartmentalization. Herein, we report a general kinetic model and offer design guidance for a compartmentalized organometallic catalytic cycle. In comparison to a non-compartmentalized catalysis, compartmentalization is quantitatively shown to prevent the unwanted intermediate deactivation, boost the corresponding reaction efficiency (γ), and subsequently increase catalytic turnover frequency (TOF). The key parameter in the model is the volumetric diffusive conductance (FV) that describes catalysts' diffusion propensity across a compartment's boundary. Optimal values of FV for a specific organometallic chemistry are needed to achieve maximal values of γ and TOF. As illustrated in specific reaction examples, our model suggests that a tailored compartment design, including the use of nanomaterials, is needed to suit a specific organometallic catalytic cycle. This work provides justification and design principles for further exploration into compartmentalizing organometallics to enhance catalytic performance. The conclusions from this work are generally applicable to other catalytic systems that need proper design guidance in confinement and compartmentalization.

Graphical abstract: A generalized kinetic model for compartmentalization of organometallic catalysis

Supplementary files

Article information

Article type
Edge Article
09 Sep 2021
21 Dec 2021
First published
05 Jan 2022
This article is Open Access

All publication charges for this article have been paid for by the Royal Society of Chemistry
Creative Commons BY license

Chem. Sci., 2022,13, 1101-1110

A generalized kinetic model for compartmentalization of organometallic catalysis

B. J. Jolly, N. H. Co, A. R. Davis, P. L. Diaconescu and C. Liu, Chem. Sci., 2022, 13, 1101 DOI: 10.1039/D1SC04983F

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