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Keywords:

  • ab initio calculations;
  • noncovalent interactions;
  • pnicogens;
  • phosphorus;
  • supramolecular chemistry

The authors would like to highlight some recent developments that were missed in this paper. Zahn, Frank, and Kirchner presented first results on the noncovalent pnicogen interaction at an international conference (the 44th Symposium of Theoretical Chemistry, Ramsau am Dachstein) in September 2008. Further calculations and experimental studies were carried out and, finally, this publication was submitted to Chem. Eur. J. in July 2010. Meanwhile, Tuononen and co-workers independently published an article entitled “Weak Interactions between Trivalent Pnictogen Centers: Computational Analysis of Bonding in Dimers X3E⋅⋅⋅EX3 (E=Pnictogen, X=Halogen)”,1 which was based on their prior experimental investigations on the topic.2 In their theoretical work, Tuononen and co-workers presented high-level (up to LCCSD(T)/aug-cc-pVQZ) data of noncovalent pnicogen bonds, arriving at the conclusion that “E⋅⋅⋅E interactions…are sufficiently strong to be considered relevant in building supramolecular assemblies and constitute an underexplored inorganic structural motif that can be used in crystal engineering”, which is the same as the conclusion in our paper, although it is stated differently: “In conclusion, the pnicogen bonds have a comparable strength to hydrogen bonds and might act as a new conceivable molecular linker.” Furthermore, we would like to highlight that Klinkhammer and Pyykkö had already reported theoretical evidence of an attractive interaction between H2As[BOND]AsH2 and H2Sb[BOND]SbH2 dimers.3 Additionally, we would like to point out that, since our early work on noncovalent pnicogen bonds, the topic has been studied most extensively by Scheiner, whose results have recently been reviewed.4