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Keywords:

  • biphasic catalysis;
  • clusters;
  • phosphonic acid;
  • rhodium;
  • transmission electron microscopy
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

Pressure-sized clusters: Aqueous solutions of rhodium complexes stabilized by phosphinophosphonic acid ligands turn ink-black under a hydrogen atmosphere. Depending on the hydrogen pressure applied, rhodium clusters of 2–6 nm can be isolated (see scheme). These clusters are catalysts for the biphasic hydrogenation of olefins, arenes, and nitro compounds.