Download the full-sized PDF of Empowering the Base Metals: Rational Design of Homogeneous Catalysts for Hydrotreatment, and Reduction of Organic UnsaturatesDownload the full-sized PDF



Permanent link (DOI):


Export to: EndNote  |  Zotero  |  Mendeley


This file is in the following communities:

Graduate Studies and Research, Faculty of


This file is in the following collections:

Theses and Dissertations

Empowering the Base Metals: Rational Design of Homogeneous Catalysts for Hydrotreatment, and Reduction of Organic Unsaturates Open Access


Other title
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Bunquin, Jeffrey
Supervisor and department
Stryker, Jeffrey (Chemistry)
Examining committee member and department
Smith, Kevin (Chemistry)
Buriak, Jillian (Chemistry)
Lowary, Todd (Chemistry)
West, Frederick (Chemistry)
Department of Chemistry

Date accepted
Graduation date
Doctor of Philosophy
Degree level
Hydrocarbon-soluble, low-coordinate, phosphoranimide-supported complexes of the base metals (iron, cobalt and nickel) were developed and evaluated for a range of stoichiometric and catalytic bond-forming and bond-breaking transformations. An unprecedented family of tetrametallic clusters of Co(I) and Ni(I), with formula [M(NPtBu3)]4, was synthesized in high yields and characterized by single crystal X-ray analysis and by solution-phase magnetic susceptibility measurements. These ancillary-ligand-free clusters exhibit high room-temperature magnetic susceptibility and are structurally unique; each metal center in the coplanar, tetranuclear core is linear, two-coordinate. A rare homoleptic, mononuclear, three-coordinate Co(III) d6 complex [Co(NPtBu3)3] was also synthesized in high yield and characterized using NMR spectroscopy and single crystal X-ray analysis. The ancillary ligand-free “surface-mimetic” clusters constitute a new class of high-activity homogeneous catalysts for room-temperature hydrogenation and hydrosilylation of polar and nonpolar unsaturates. Both clusters hydrogenate unactivated and sterically hindered alkenes and alkynes to the corresponding alkanes (1 atm H2). These clusters also hydrosilylate a range of functionalized aldehydes and ketones, utilizing a diverse scope of organosilyl hydride reagents. Radical clock hydrosilylation studies revealed differences in the mechanistic behavior of the isostructural Co(I) and Ni(I) clusters: the cobalt catalyst functions through a non-radical mechanism while nickel catalyst shows contributions from radical-type pathway(s). More importantly, both Co(I) and Ni(I) clusters are high-activity catalysts for the hydrogenolysis of carbon-heteroatom bonds under remarkably mild conditions (90-150 °C, 1 atm H2). Both clusters constitute the very first set of homogeneous, first-row transition metal catalysts for the mild-condition hydrodesulfurization of dibenzothiophene derivatives. The tetranuclear clusters also activate C-O bonds in symmetrical and unsymmetrical aryl ethers and dibenzofuran-type substrates, producing aromatic hydrocarbons and phenols. In some preliminary experiments, the Ni(I) cluster and the mononuclear Co(III) complex were shown active for the hydrogenolysis of C-N bond in neutral and basic aromatic nitrogenous substrates. Results of hydrogenolysis studies show catalyst selectivity for the direct hydrogenolysis of Caryl–X bonds (X = S, O, N) with complete suppression of aromatic ring hydrogenation pathways. Lastly, the both Co(I) and Ni(I) clusters effect the deoxygenation of a range of functionalized carbonyl substrates, producing unique mixtures of hydrocarbons under mild hydrosilylation conditions.
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
Citation for previous publication
Camacho-Bunquin, J.; Ferguson, M. J.; Stryker, J. M. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2013, 135, 5537–5540.

File Details

Date Uploaded
Date Modified
Audit Status
Audits have not yet been run on this file.
File format: pdf (Portable Document Format)
Mime type: application/pdf
File size: 25090810
Last modified: 2015:10:12 15:20:40-06:00
Filename: Bunquin-JC-PhDChemistry-Fall2013.pdf
Original checksum: 7816e87641f90ea1f44978327b271b29
Well formed: true
Valid: true
Status message: File header gives version as 1.4, but catalog dictionary gives version as 1.3
Status message: Too many fonts to report; some fonts omitted. Total fonts = 4539
Page count: 434
Activity of users you follow
User Activity Date