Co(salen)-type [where salen = di-(salicylal)-ethylenediimine] complexes were shown to be efficient catalysts in the oxidation of 2-phenylpropane (cumene) by dioxygen primarily to 2-phenyl-2-propanol (cumyl alcohol), 2-phenylpropene (α-methylstyrene), and 1-phenylethanone (acetophenone) applying 1H NMR spectroscopy and gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC–MS). The effect of substitution on the ligand was also monitored in both oxygen-absorption and the catalytic reaction. Based on these results, the trend observed for the production of α-methylstyrene and cumyl alcohol were parallel to dioxygen uptake by the catalyst in neat cumene, while acetophenone productions obeyed a non-linear trend. The best selectivity for the reaction in terms of acetophenone production was observed for the complex with the least oxygen-absorption feature. The intermediate of the reaction, LCo(III)-OOcumyl (where L = salen) complex, was synthesized and characterized by IR, 1H NMR spectroscopy as well as elemental analysis, and its reactivity in the present catalytic reaction was also studied. A series of experiments were performed to propose a mechanism for the reaction on the basis of the product distributions in the reaction mixture.
Research on Chemical Intermediates – Springer Journals
Published: Nov 10, 2011
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