Iron Catalyzed Hydroformylation of Alkenes under Mild Conditions: Evidence of an Fe(II) Catalyzed Process.

['Pandey S', 'Raj KV', 'Shinde DR', 'Vanka K', 'Kashyap V', 'Kurungot S', 'Vinod CP', 'Chikkali SH']
J Am Chem Soc. 2018 Mar 11. doi: 10.1021/jacs.8b01286. [Epub ahead of print]

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['Earth abundant, first row transition metals offer a cheap and sustainable alternative to the rare and precious metals. However, utilization of first row metals in catalysis requires harsh reaction conditions, suffers from limited activity, and fails to tolerate functional groups. Reported here is a highly efficient iron catalyzed hydroformylation of alkenes under mild conditions. This protocol operates at 10-30 bars syngas pressure below 100 °C, utilizes readily available ligands and applies to an array of olefins. Thus, the iron precursor [HFe(CO)4][Ph3PNPPh3] (1) in the presence of triphenyl phosphine catalyzes the hydroformylation of 1-hexene (S2), 1-octene(S1), 1-decene (S3), 1-dodecene (S4), 1-octadecene (S5), trimethoxy(vinyl)silane (S6), trimethyl(vinyl)silane (S7), cardanol (S8), 2,3-dihydrofuran (S9), allyl malonic acid (S10), styrene (S11), 4-methyl styrene (S12), 4-iBu-styrene (S13), 4-tBu-styrene (S14), 4-methoxy styrene (S15), 4-acetoxy styrene (S16), 4-bromo styrene (S17), 4-chloro styrene (S18), 4-vinylbenzonitrile (S19), 4-vinylbenzoic acid (S20), and allyl benzene (S21) to corresponding aldehydes in good to excellent yields. Both electron donating and electron withdrawing substituents could be tolerated and excellent conversions were obtained for S11-S20. Remarkably, the addition of 1 mol% acetic acid promotes the reaction to completion within 16-24 hours. Detailed mechanistic investigations revealed in-situ formation of an iron-dihydride complex [H2Fe(CO)2(PPh3)2] (A) as an active catalytic species. This finding was further supported by cyclic voltammetry investigations and intermediacy of an Fe(0)-Fe(II) species was established. Combined experimental and computational investigations support the existence of an iron-dihydride as the catalyst resting state, which then follows a Fe(II) based catalytic cycle to produce aldehyde.']