Rapid ether and alcohol C-O bond hydrogenolysis catalyzed by tandem high-valent metal triflate + supported Pd catalysts

Zhi Li, Rajeev S. Assary, Abdurrahman C. Atesin, Larry A. Curtiss, Tobin J. Marks

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71 Citations (Scopus)


The thermodynamically leveraged conversion of ethers and alcohols to saturated hydrocarbons is achieved efficiently with low loadings of homogeneous M(OTf)n + heterogeneous Pd tandem catalysts (M = transition metal; OTf = triflate; n = 4). For example, Hf(OTf)4 mediates rapid endothermic ether ⇌ alcohol and alcohol ⇌ alkene equilibria, while Pd/C catalyzes the subsequent, exothermic alkene hydrogenation. The relative C-O cleavage rates scale as 3 > 2 > 1. The reaction scope extends to efficient conversion of biomass-derived ethers, such as THF derivatives, to the corresponding alkanes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)104-107
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 8 2014


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry

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