Synthesis and structures of [(trimethylsilyl)methyl]sodium and -potassium with bi- and tridentate n-donor ligands

William Clegg, Benjamin Grant Conway, Alan R. Kennedy, Jan Klett, Robert E. Mulvey, Luca Russo

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44 Citations (Scopus)


[(Trimethylsilyl) methyl] sodium [NaCH2SiMe3] (1) was prepared by a metathesis reaction of [(trimethylsilyl) methyl] lithium [LiCH2SiMe3] with sodium tert-butoxide in n-hexane. Polydentate donors such as N,N,N',N'-tetramethylethylenediamine (TMEDA) and N,N,N', N '', N ''-pentamethyldiethylenetriamine (PMDETA) form n-hexane-soluble complexes of 1 and the potassium congener [KCH2SiMe3] (2). The crystal structures of the polymers [(TMEDA) NaCH2SiMe3] (1a) and [(PMDETA) KCH2SiMe3] (2a) were determined as infinite helical chains exhibiting 3(1) or 3(2) screw-axis symmetry. Compound 2b was obtained as the donor-deficient heterocubane pseudotetramer [(TMEDA)(3)(KCH2SiMe3)(4)], with intermolecular interactions of the TMEDA-uncoordinated potassium atom with a peripheral methyl group of a neighbouring tetramer to form infinite chains. The relatively easy accessibility and stability should make these (trimethylsilyl) methyl compounds of sodium and potassium valuable starting points for further exploration of the chemistry of these common-utility heavier alkali metals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)721-726
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Inorganic Chemistry
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2011


  • aggregation
  • carbanions
  • sodium
  • potassium
  • n-donor ligands
  • ray crystal-structures
  • alkali-metal alkyls
  • organometallic compounds
  • thermal-decomposition
  • mediated zincation
  • aryl derivatives
  • strong bases
  • complexes
  • calcium
  • benzyl


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