Study of proton coupled electron transfer in a biomimetic dimanganese water oxidation catalyst with terminal water ligands

Ting Wang, Gary W. Brudvig, Victor S. Batista

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44 Citations (Scopus)


The oxomanganese complex [H2O(terpy)MnIII(μ-O) 2MnIV(terpy)H2O]3+ (1, terpy = 2,2:6-2-terpyridine) is a biomimetic model of the oxygen-evolving complex of photosystem II with terminal water ligands. When bound to TiO2 surfaces, 1 is activated by primary oxidants (e.g., Ce4+(aq) or oxone in acetate buffers) to catalyze the oxidation of water yielding O2 evolution [G. Li et al. Energy Environ. Sci. 2009, 2, 230-238]. The activation is thought to involve oxidation of the inorganic core [MnIII(μ-O) 2MnIV]3+ to generate the [Mn IV(μ-O)2MnIV]4+ state 1 ox first and then the highly reactive Mn oxyl species Mn IVO through proton coupled electron transfer (PCET). Here, we investigate the step 1 â' 1ox as compared to the analogous conversion in an oxomanganese complex without terminal water ligands, the [(bpy)2 MnIII(μ-O)2 MnIV (bpy)2]3+ complex (2, bpy = 2,2-bipyridyl). We characterize the oxidation in terms of free energy calculations of redox potentials and pKa as directly compared to cyclic voltammogram measurements. We find that the pKa of terminal water ligands depend strongly on the oxidation states of the Mn centers, changing by â13 pH units (i.e., from 14 to 1) during the III,IV â' IV,IV transition. Furthermore, we find that the oxidation potential of 1 is strongly dependent on pH (in contrast to the pH-independent redox potential of 2) as well as by coordination of Lewis base moieties (e.g., carboxylate groups) that competitively bind to Mn by exchange with terminal water ligands. The reported analysis of ligand binding free energies, pKa, and redox potentials indicates that the III,IV â' IV,IV oxidation of 1 in the presence of acetate (AcO-) involves the following PCET: [H2O(terpy) MnIII(μ-O)2MnIV(terpy)AcO]2+ â' [HO(terpy)MnIV(μ-O)2MnIV(terpy)AcO] 2+ + H+ + e-.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2395-2401
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Chemical Theory and Computation
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 10 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry

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