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Heavier alkaline earth catalysts for the intermolecular hydroamination of vinylarenes, dienes, and alkynes

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The heavier group 2 complexes [M{N(SiMe 3) 2} 2] 2(1, M = Ca; 2, M = Sr) and [M{CH(SiMe 3) 2} 2(THF) 2] (3, M = Ca; 4, M = Sr) are shown to be effective precatalysts for the intermolecular hydroamination of vinyl arenes and dienes under mild conditions. Initial studies revealed that the amide precatalysts, 1 and 2, while compromised in terms of absolute activity by a tendency toward transaminative behavior, offer greater stability toward polymerization/oligomerization side reactions. In every case the strontium species, 2 and 4, were found to outperform their calcium congeners. Reactions of piperidine with para-substituted styrenes are indicative of rate-determining alkene insertion in the catalytic cycle while the ease of addition of secondary cyclic amines was found to be dependent on ring size and reasoned to be a consequence of varying amine nucleophilicity. Hydroamination of conjugated dienes yielded isomeric products via η 3-allyl intermediates and their relative distributions were explained through stereoelectronic considerations. The ability to carry out the hydroamination of internal alkynes was found to be dramatically dependent upon the identity of the alkyne substituents while reactions employing terminal alkynes resulted in the precipitation of insoluble and unreactive group 2 acetylides. The rate law for styrene hydroamination with piperidine catalyzed by [Sr{N(SiMe 3) 2} 2] 2 was deduced to be first order in [amine] and [alkene] and second order in [catalyst], while large kinetic isotope effects and group 2 element-dependent ΔS † values implicated the formation of an amine-assisted rate-determining alkene insertion transition state in which there is a considerable entropic advantage associated with use of the larger strontium center.

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