Nitrogen fixation: polypyridyl azido complexes of ruthenium

Author (Your Name)

Louise Jalbert, Colby College

Date of Award


Document Type

Honors Thesis (Colby Access Only)


Colby College. Chemistry Dept.


Wayne Smith


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.


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Nitrogen -- Fixation, Ruthenium compounds, Azides

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