Nitrogen fixation: polypyridyl azido complexes of ruthenium

Louise Jalbert

Document Type Dissertation/Thesis


In my study, polypyridyl azido complexes were prepared to mimic the structure of nitrogenase and to focus on the direct metal-nitrogen bonding. Fe does not lend itselt very well to experimental studies because of its labile complexes. Because ruthenium (Ru), lis located in a lower period on the periodic table than iron, (Fe), but is in the same family, they share several chemical property similarities. Ruthenium can be used as an extension of Fe-chemistry. Their complexes are generally more stable than the corresponding Fe complexes, and therefore are more favorable to experimental study. Azides, N-IN-N-, are typically less stable than the dirilitrogen molecule and are more useful. for producing metal-nitrogen bonds. The bond length between the first and second nitrogen atoms in the metal-azide complexes is suggested to be the longest and therefore the weakest. It folIows that the evolution of diniitrogen gas eventually occurs.