Issue Date: July 9, 2007
Zinc and Gallium Neighbors Join Hands
Zinc and gallium, chemically similar elements nestled next to each other in the periodic table, finally have been convinced to join together to form the first structurally characterized complexes containing a zinc-gallium bond (Dalton Trans., DOI: 10.1039/b706402k). Cameron Jones of Australia's Monash University, along with Richard P. Rose and Andreas Stasch of Cardiff University, in Wales, prepared the complex shown and a complex with one zinc group and two gallium groups by reacting a gallium heterocyclic precursor with zinc heterocyclic complexes. The chemistry is part of a larger study by Jones and coworkers exploring the analogy between the cyclic gallium precursor and both N-heterocyclic carbene ligands and cyclic boron ligands, both of which are widely used to form transition-metal catalysts. In the past year, the gallium precursor has permitted the team to prepare a range of novel gallyl complexes, including compounds containing Ga-Sn, Ga-Cu, and Ga-Nd bonds. The researchers currently are studying the reactivity of the zinc gallyl complexes toward unsaturated organic molecules, such as alkynes, alkenes, and aldehydes, Jones says.
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