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Keywords:

  • C[BOND]O bond activation;
  • homogeneous catalysis;
  • hydrogenolysis;
  • N-heterocyclic carbene;
  • nickel
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

The first cut is the deepest: Hydrogenolysis is now applicable to the inert C(aryl)[BOND]O bonds in aryl ethers by using a soluble nickel complex ligated by N-heterocyclic carbenes. The protocol is potentially useful in the depolymerization of aryl ether-based biopolymers, such as lignin and coal. COD: 1,5-cyclooctadiene.