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garry oak - dmg

Research projects in the Rosenberg group
Our current projects focus on organosilicon and organophosphorus chemistry, with emphasis on homogeneous catalysis using transition metal complexes, mechanistic aspects of Si-H and P-H activation, and structure/property relationships in oligo- and polysilanes.

Metal-mediated P-C bond formation
We're interested in developing metal catalysts for the efficient, stereoselective preparation of chiral phosphines, which play an important role in fine chemicals synthesis. We are examining the participation of some highly reactive terminal phosphido complexes of ruthenium in addition and substitution reactions of the P-H bond in secondary phosphines.

Synthetic routes to functionalized oligosilanes
Methods abound for the construction of organic molecules containing new C-C bonds, but synthetic strategies for incorporating Si-Si bonds are not nearly so well established. We can use metal catalysts to make organosilicon reagents of variable chain length, and then selectively incorporate new side chains via residual Si-H bonds using a Lewis acidic borane catalyst. We're exploring the scope of these strategies in the production of new reagents and polymers based on silicon.

Catalytic silane dehydrocoupling
The Rh-catalyzed formation of Si-Si bonds from primary and secondary silanes allows us to make oligosilanes containing reactive Si-H bonds. However, the mechanism of this dehydrogenative coupling by late metal catalysts remains poorly understood, so we are using NMR and (in collaboration with the McIndoe group) electrospray MS to learn more and develop more active catalysts.

Chemistry Faculty | Department of Chemistry | Contact the Department of Chemistry | University of Victoria