Absolute configuration retention of a configurationally labile ligand during dynamic processes of thiolate protected gold clusters

Yanan Wang, Esko Makkonen, Xi Chen, Thomas Burgi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Monolayer protected metal clusters are dynamic nanoscale objects. For example, the chiral Au-38(2-PET)(24) cluster (2-PET: 2-phenylethylthiolate) racemizes at moderate temperature. In addition, ligands and metal atoms can easily exchange between clusters. Such processes are important for applications of monolayer protected metal clusters; however, the mechanistic study of such processes turns out to be challenging. Here we use a configurationally labile, axially chiral ligand, biphenyl-2,2 '-dithiol (R/S-BiDi), as a probe to study dynamic cluster processes. It is shown that the ligand exchange of free R/S-BiDi on a chiral Au-38(2-PET)(24) cluster is diastereospecific. Using chiral chromatography, isolated single diastereomers of the type anticlockwise/clockwise-Au-38(2-PET)(22)(R/S-BiDi)(1) could be isolated. Upon heating, the cluster framework racemizes, while the R/S-BiDi ligand does not. These findings demonstrate that during cluster racemization and/or ligand exchange between clusters, the R/S-BiDi ligand is sufficiently confined, thus preventing its racemization, and exclude the possibility that the ligand desorbs from the cluster surface.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9413–9419
Number of pages7
JournalChemical Science
Volume12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jun 2021
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • CIRCULAR-DICHROISM
  • EXCHANGE REACTIONS
  • AU-25 NANOCLUSTERS
  • MONOLAYER
  • NANOPARTICLE
  • AU-38
  • AU-38(SR)(24)
  • SPECTROSCOPY
  • REACTIVITY
  • MECHANISM

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