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Speaker: James McQuade (Rutgers- Newark)

Date: 15 Oct 2020

Title: “Polymer-supported Lewis acid catalysts”

PhD Candidate, Jaekle Group

In recent years, catalysts derived from Main Group elements have enabled metal-free processes for a wide range of organic transformations. Frustrated Lewis Pairs (FLPs) are a particularly promising approach which uses bulky Lewis acidic and basic species whose steric crowding prevents the formation of a Lewis pair adduct. The unquenched Lewis basic and acidic centers are therefore able to interact cooperatively to activate substrates and thus catalyze reactions. However, progress in applying FLP chemistry has been hindered by the need for highly moisture-sensitive catalyst systems which lag behind the established transition metal catalysts in recyclability. Polymer-supported catalysts are of great interest because the immobilization of the active species may increase stability and offer opportunities for recycling, and thus a route to more industrially-applicable catalysts. This presentation discusses the development of a new family of borane-functionalized polymers for applications as supported Lewis acid and frustrated Lewis pair catalysts. This work provides a novel adaptation of FLP chemistry to polymers as catalysts that combine the advantages of homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis.