Spectroscopic and Computational Studies of Spin States of Iron(IV) Nitrido and Imido Complexes

Lukas Bucinsky, Martin Breza, Wei Tsung Lee, Anne K. Hickey, Diane A. Dickie, Ismael Nieto, Jordan A. Degayner, T. David Harris, Karsten Meyer, J Krzystek, Andrew Ozarowski, Joscha Nehrkorn, Alexander Schnegg, Karsten Holldack, Rolfe H. Herber, Joshua Telser, Jeremy M. Smith

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35 Citations (Scopus)


High-oxidation-state metal complexes with multiply bonded ligands are of great interest for both their reactivity as well as their fundamental bonding properties. This paper reports a combined spectroscopic and theoretical investigation into the effect of the apical multiply bonded ligand on the spin-state preferences of threefold symmetric iron(IV) complexes with tris(carbene) donor ligands. Specifically, singlet (S = 0) nitrido [{PhB(ImR)3}FeN], R = tBu (1), Mes (mesityl, 2) and the related triplet (S = 1) imido complexes, [{PhB(ImR)3}Fe(NR′)]+, R = Mes, R′ = 1-adamantyl (3), tBu (4), were investigated by electronic absorption and Mössbauer effect spectroscopies. For comparison, two other Fe(IV) nitrido complexes, [(TIMENAr)FeN]+ (TIMENAr = tris[2-(3-aryl-imidazol-2-ylidene)ethyl]amine; Ar = Xyl (xylyl), Mes), were investigated by 57Fe Mössbauer spectroscopy, including applied-field measurements. The paramagnetic imido complexes 3 and 4 were also studied by magnetic susceptibility measurements (for 3) and paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy: high-frequency and -field electron paramagnetic resonance (for 3 and 4) and frequency-domain Fourier-transform (FD-FT) terahertz electron paramagnetic resonance (for 3), which reveal their zero-field splitting parameters. Experimentally correlated theoretical studies comprising ligand-field theory and quantum chemical theory, the latter including both density functional theory and ab initio methods, reveal the key role played by the Fe 3dz2 (a1) orbital in these systems: the nature of its interaction with the nitrido or imido ligand dictates the spin-state preference of the complex. The ability to tune the spin state through the energy and nature of a single orbital has general relevance to the factors controlling spin states in complexes with applicability as single molecule devices.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4751-4768
Number of pages18
JournalInorganic Chemistry
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 17 Apr 2017
Externally publishedYes

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