Kinetics and mechanism of the oxidation of alcohols by tetrapropylammonium perruthenate

Chandler, W. David; Zhao Wang; Lee, Donald G.
September 2005
Canadian Journal of Chemistry;Sep2005, Vol. 83 Issue 9, p1212
Academic Journal
2-Propanol is oxidized by tetrapropylammonium perruthenate (TPAP) in a reaction that is second order in TPAP and first order in 2-propanol. One of the products, believed to be ruthenium dioxide, is an effective catalyst for the reaction, making it an autocatalytic process. The rate of oxidation is relatively insensitive to the presence of substituents. Primary kinetic deuterium isotope effects are observed when either the hydroxyl or the α hydrogen is replaced by deuterium. The only product obtained from the oxidation of cyclobutanol is cyclobutanone, indicating that the reaction is a two-electron process. Tetrahydrofuran is oxidized at a rate that is several orders of magnitude slower than that observed for 2-propanol, suggesting that the reaction of TPAP with alcohols may be initiated by formation of perruthenate esters. A tentative mechanism consistent with these observations is proposed.


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