"Efficient Synthetic Protocols for the Preparation of Common N-Heterocyclic Carbene Precursors"

Morgan Hans, Jan Lorkowski, Albert Demonceau, and Lionel Delaude

journal cover
          source: Beilstein Journal of Organic Chemistry
            year: 2015
          volume: 11
      first page: 2318
       last page: 2325
             doi: 10.3762/bjoc.11.252

graphical abstract

Abstract: The one-pot condensation of glyoxal, two equivalents of cyclohexylamine, and paraformaldehyde in the presence of aqueous HBF4 provided a straightforward access to 1,3-dicyclohexylimidazolium tetrafluoroborate (ICy·HBF4). 1,3-Dibenzylimidazolium tetrafluoroborate (IBn·HBF4) was obtained along the same lines. To synthesize 1,3-diarylmidazolium salts, it was necessary to isolate the intermediate N,N'-diarylethylenediimines prior to their cyclization. Although this additional step required more time and reagents, it led to a much more efficient overall process. It also proved very convenient to carry out the synthesis of imidazolinium salts in parallel to their imidazolium counterparts via the reduction of the diimines into diammonium salts. The critical assembly of the C2 precarbenic unit was best achieved with paraformaldehyde and chlorotrimethylsilane in the case of imidazolium derivatives, whereas the use of triethyl orthoformate under microwave irradiation was most appropriate for the fast and efficient synthesis of imidazolinium salts. This strategy was applied to the synthesis of six common N-heterocyclic carbene precursors, namely, 1,3-dimesitylimidazolium chloride (IMes·HCl), 1,3-dimesitylimidazolium tetrafluoroborate (IMes·HBF4), 1,3-dimesitylimidazolinium chloride (SIMes·HCl), 1,3-bis(2,6-diisopropylphenyl)imidazolium chloride (IDip·HCl or IPr·HCl), 1,3-bis(2,6-diisopropylphenyl)imidazolinium chloride (SIDip·HCl or SIPr·HCl), and 1,3-bis(2,6-bis(diphenylmethyl)-4-methylphenyl)imidazolium chloride (IDip*·HCl or IPr*·HCl).

Keywords: Cyclization, Experimental Procedure, Imidazolinium Salt, Imidazolium Salt, Microwave Heating

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