Nickel(ii) bis(diphosphine) complexes that contain positioned bases in the second coordination sphere have been found to catalyze the reduction of O 2 with H2 to selectively form water. The complexes also serve as electrocatalysts for the reduction of O2 with the addition of a weak acid. In contrast, a closely related nickel diphosphine complex without the positioned bases is catalytically inactive for O2 reduction. These results indicate that pendant bases in synthetic catalysts for O2 reduction can play a similar role to proton relays in enzymes, and that such relays should be considered in the design of catalysts for multi-electron and multi-proton reactions.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Inorganic Chemistry