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As he was leaving the lab for the night, William Weigel turned off the light in his lab space and noticed one of the (many) flasks in his fume hood was glowing green. It turned out that a small amount of an iridium complex (structure shown) stuck to the walls of this flask had started to fluoresce due to a bit of blue-ultraviolet light coming off of a photochemical reaction he was running nearby. And that’s not the only thing this compound does when hit with light: David Martin’s lab at the University of California, Riverside, in which Weigel is a PhD student, has devised a series of C–H functionalization reactions that are catalyzed by this iridium complex when illuminated with blue light-emitting diodes (ACS Catal. 2019, DOI: 10.1021/acscatal.9b01394).
Submitted by William Weigel
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