Thallium(I) sandwich, multidecker, and ether complexes stabilized by weakly-coordinating anions: A spectroscopic, structural, and theoretical investigation

Yann Sarazin, David L. Hughes, Nikolas Kaltsoyannis, Joseph A. Wright, Manfred Bochmann

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The reaction of thallium ethoxide with [H(OEt2)2][H2N{B(C6F5)3}2] in diethyl ether afforded [Tl(OEt2)3][H2N{B(C6F5)3}2] (2a), [Tl(OEt2)4][H2N{B(C6F5)3}2] (2b), or [Tl(OEt2)2][H2N{B(C6F5)3}2]·CH2Cl2 (2c), depending on the reaction conditions. The dication in the hydrolysis product [Tl43-OH)2][H2N{B(C6F5)3}2]2·4CH2Cl2 consists of two bridging and two terminal Tl+ ions bound to triply bridging hydroxides. Heating Et2O complexes in toluene afforded [Tl(?6-toluene)n][H2N{B(C6F5)3}2] (4, n = 2, 3), while C6Me6 addition gave the first thallium-C6Me6 adduct, [Tl(?6-C6Me6)2][H2N{B(C6F5)3}2]·1.5CH2Cl2 (5a), a bent sandwich complex with very short Tl···centroid distances. These arene complexes show no close contacts between cations and anions. Displacement of toluene ligands by ferrocene gave [Tl2(FeCp2)3][H2N{B(C6F5)3}2]2·5CH2Cl2 (6) which contains the multidecker cations [Tl(FeCp2)]+ and [Tl(FeCp2)2]+ in a 1:1 ratio. By contrast, decamethylferrocene leads to electron transfer; the isolable thallium-ferrocene complexes may therefore be viewed as precursor complexes for this redox step. With 18-crown-6 the complexes [Tl(18-crown-6)2][H2N{B(C6F5)3}2] (11a) and [Tl(18-crown-6)][H2N{B(C6F5)3}2]·2CH2Cl2 (11b) were isolated. The structure of the latter shows an eight-coordinate thallium ion, where the coordination to the six oxygen donors in equatorial positions is completed by axial contacts to two F atoms of the counter anions. The bonding between thallium(I) and arenes was explored by density-functional theory (DFT) calculations. The optimized geometry of [Tl(tol)3]+ converged to a structure very similar to that obtained experimentally. Calculations on [Tl(C6Me6)2]+ (5b) to establish whether a linear or bent geometry is the most stable revealed a very flat potential-energy surface for distortions of the Ctr(3)-Tl-Ctr(4) angle. Overall, there is very little energetic preference for one particular geometry over another above about 140°, in good agreement with the crystallographic geometry. The calculated Tl-arene interaction energies increase from 73.7 kJ mol-1 for toluene to 121.7 kJ mol-1 for C6Me6.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)881-894
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 9 Jan 2007

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