The co-ordination chemistry of tellurium and related selenium ligands

  • S.A. Mbogo

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


2-(2-pyridyl)phenyl(p-ethoxyphenyl)tellurium(II), (RR1Te) reacts with HgC12 at room temperature to give white HgCl2.RR1Te. On setting aside, or on warming the reaction mixture a yellow material, [R1HgCl.(RTeCl)2] is formed. Multinuclear NMR(125Te, 199Hg, 1H) and mass spectroscopy confirm the formulation, and confirm the ease of transfer of the p-ethoxyphenyl group (R1) between the metal centres. The crystal structure of the yellow material consists of two discrete RTeCl molecules together with a R1HgCl molecule. There is no dative bond formation between these species, hence the preferred description of the formation of an inclusion complex.

The reaction of RR1Te with Copper(I) chloride in the cold gives an air sensitive yellow product Cu3Cl3(RR1Te)2(0.5CH3CN); under reflux in air changes to the green Cu2Cl(RR1Te)(0.5 EtOH). By contrast, the reaction of RR1Te with acetonitrile solution of Copper(II) salts under mild conditions affords the white materials CuCl(RR1Te) and CuBr(RR1Te)H2O.

RR1Te reacts with PdCl2 and PtCl2 to give materials albeit not well defined, can be seen as intermediates to the synthesis of inorganic phase of the type M3XTe2XCl2X. Paramagnetism is associated with some of the palladium and platinum products. The 195Pt NMR measurement in DMSO establishes the presence of six platinum species, which are assigned to Pt(IV), Pt(III) or Pt(II). The reactions show that in the presence of PdCl2 or PtCl2 both R and R1 are very labile.

The reaction of RHgCl(R= 2-(2-pyridyl)phenyl) with SeX4(X= Cl, Br) gives compounds which suggest that both Trans-metallation and redox processes are involved. By varying reaction conditions materials which appear to be intermediates in the trans-metallation process are isolated.

Potentially bidentate tellurium ligands having molecular formula RTe(CH2)nTeR,Ln, (R= Ph,(t-Bu). C6H4, n = 5,10) are prepared. Palladium and Platinum complexes containing these ligands are prepared. Also complex Ph3SnC1L(L = p-EtO.C6H4) is prepared.
Date of AwardMay 1990
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorWilliam R. McWhinnie (Supervisor)


  • tellurium ligands
  • transition metal tellurium complexes
  • pyridine
  • organoselenium

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