Photochemical Synthesis of Transition Metal-Stabilized Uranium(VI) Nitride Complexes Article - Décembre 2022

Xiaoqing Xin, Iskander Douair, Thayalan Rajeshkumar, Yue Zhao, Shuao Wang, Laurent Maron, Congqing Zhu

Xiaoqing Xin, Iskander Douair, Thayalan Rajeshkumar, Yue Zhao, Shuao Wang, Laurent Maron, Congqing Zhu, « Photochemical Synthesis of Transition Metal-Stabilized Uranium(VI) Nitride Complexes  », Nature Communications, décembre 2022, p. 3809. ISSN 2041-1723

Abstract

Abstract Uranium nitrides play important roles in dinitrogen activation and functionalization and in chemistry for nuclear fuels, but the synthesis and isolation of the highly reactive uranium(VI) nitrides remains challenging. Here, we report an example of transition metal (TM) stabilized U(VI) nitride complexes, which are generated by the photolysis of azide-bridged U(IV)-TM (TM = Rh, Ir) precursors. The U(V) nitride intermediates with bridged azide ligands are isolated successfully by careful control of the irradiation time, suggesting that the photolysis of azide-bridged U(IV)-TM precursors is a stepwise process. The presence of two U(VI) nitrides stabilized by three TMs is clearly demonstrated by an X-ray crystallographic study. These TM stabilized U(V) nitride intermediates and U(VI) nitride products exhibit excellent stability both in the solid-state and in THF solution under ambient light. Density functional theory calculations show that the photolysis necessary to break the N-N bond of the azide ligands implies excitation from uranium f-orbital to the lowest unoccupied molecular orbital (LUMO), as suggested by the strong antibonding N-(N 2 ) character present in the latter.

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