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Keywords:

  • aldehydes;
  • esters;
  • hydrosilylation;
  • iron catalysis;
  • reduction
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

On a direct course to the aldehyde: Hydrosilylation catalyzed by a well-defined N-heterocyclic-carbene–iron complex under UV irradiation enabled the selective reduction of esters to aldehydes (see scheme; Bn=benzyl, Mes=mesityl). The low catalyst loading and very mild reaction conditions make this chemoselective transformation a promising alternative to the reduction of esters with diisobutylaluminum hydride.