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Keywords:

  • Nickel;
  • Palladium;
  • Carbon dioxide;
  • Density functional calculations

Abstract

Monomeric Ni and Pd hydroxides stabilized by the iPrPCP pincer ligand react with CO2 to give labile terminal bicarbonate complexes that readily lose CO2 and water to give binuclear carbonate complexes. Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) has been used to monitor the decomposition of both bicarcabonates in the solid state. When the carbonate complexes are heated under reflux in thf in the presence of water, full decarboxylation takes place, restoring the starting hydroxides and demonstrating that CO2 insertion is a fully reversible process. The decarboxylation of the nickel carbonate complex is completed more readily, suggesting that the reaction of the Pd hydroxide with CO2 is more favourable than that of its nickel counterpart. This is supported by DFT calculations, which also shows that CO2 insertion takes place through a concerted Lipscomb-type mechanism.