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Photochemical properties of Re(CO)3 complexes with and without a local proton source and implications for CO2 reduction catalysis

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Borter,  J.-H.
Department of Dynamics at Surfaces, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Schwarzer,  Dirk
Department of Dynamics at Surfaces, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Paul, L. A., Röttcher, N. C., Zimara, J., Borter, J.-H., Du, J.-P., Schwarzer, D., et al. (2020). Photochemical properties of Re(CO)3 complexes with and without a local proton source and implications for CO2 reduction catalysis. Organometallics, 39(13), 2405-2414. doi:10.1021/acs.organomet.0c00240.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-000A-78D7-D
Abstract
Herein, we present a detailed study on the photophysical properties and the excited state reactivity of two mononuclear Re(CO)3 complexes with imdazol-pyridine ligands equipped with and without a local proton source, [Re(CO)3LCl], where for 1: L = 2,4-ditert-butyl-6-(6-(1-methyl-1H-imidazol-2- yl)pyridin-2-yl)phenol and 2: L = 2-(3,5-ditert-butyl-2-methox-yphenyl)-6-(1-methyl-1H-imidazol-2-yl)pyridine. Time-resolved IR and UV/vis spectroscopy revealed that excitation of 1 and 2 is followed by population of the triplet excited state within <100 fs, where structural and vibrational relaxation to the T1 equilibrium structure is observed on the picosecond time scale. The T1 state can be viewed as a MLCT state as all ν(CO) features in the transient infrared (TRIR) spectra are shifted to higher wavenumbers upon excitation, which is indicative for a decreasing Re →COπ-backdonation. The T1 states have considerably long lifetimes at room temperature of 160 ns for 1 and 430 ns for 2 in dmf and they can be successfully quenched by the sacrificial electron donors triethanolamine (TEOA) and 1,3-dimethyl-2-phenyl-2,3-dihydro-1H-benzo[d]imidazole (BIH). The quenching rates are 2 orders of magnitude larger for BIH than for TEOA, as the latter reaction is endergonic. However, both species are not active in the photochemical CO2-to-CO conversion. We rationalize this for 2 by the low steady-state concentration of the initial reduction product, [Re(CO)3LCl]−, which ejects chloride rather fast. Thus, the second, homogeneous electron transfer process between [Re(CO)3LCl]− and [Re(CO)3L(solvent)] forming the active species [Re(CO)3L]−, has a very low probability and decomposition pathways come to the fore. 1 decomposes under irradiation in the presence of BIH or TEOA forming the initial photoproduct 3. We tentatively assume that the ligand in 3 is deprotonated and switches from a N,N- to a N,O−-coordination mode. This indicates that in the excited state the Re−N bond is cleaved quite easily, as this decomposition pathway has not been observed under electrochemical conditions.