Submitted by Adam Johnson / Harvey Mudd College on Thu, 01/04/2024 - 16:21
My Notes

The Tonks group has helped to revitalize interest in early metal, especially titanium, organometallic chemistry in recent years. Often his group uses Ti complexes for multi-component coupling, increasingly with masked low-valent Ti(II) as an important intermediate. This paper is more fundamental, exploring a ligand based on ortho-terphenoxide since the meta- and para- derivatives were already known. Along the way, they report some interesting NMR and structural information, and finish with some hydroamination catalysis. 

Learning Goals

Students will classify complexes using the CBC method

Students will see that reductants can be used as oxidants (formally) and be exposed to the concept of redox non-innocent ligands

Students will see the effect of steric bulk and rigid ligands on NMR signals

Students will learn about how chemists interpret and parameterize X-ray crystal structures

Students will extrapolate from what is given in the paper to explore the mechanism of hydroamination with early metals



Implementation Notes

In my Fall 2023 course, I started with four weeks of lecture and in-class activities exploring the basics of MO theory, ligands, and reactions, before discussing five papers that I chose. This was paper number five, so the students were well-practiced in talking about organometallic chemistry by this time. the last four weeks were discussions of student-chosen papers. 

I assigned this reading guide to students a week in advance of an in-class discussion of the paper. The discussion was wide ranging but generally went through the concepts outlined in the reading guide. I collected the guide after class, allowing students to make additions/corrections based on the class discussion.

Time Required
75 minutes
Evaluation Methods

The reading guide was graded for "completeness" rather than correctness.

Evaluation Results


In general, students were able to capture the relevant information from the paper with little problem. Only a few students really understood the mechanism of the reaction before the discussion, so in this case the discussion was useful so that students could trade ideas and eventually develop a reasonable catalytic cycle. 

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