Side Chain Induced Self-Assembly and Selective Catalytic Oxidation Activity of Copper(I)−Copper(II)‑N4 Complexes

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journal

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  • Yun-Lei Peng
  • Jie Liu
  • Lizhuang Chen
  • Dan Li


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1237-1241
Journal / PublicationCrystal Growth & Design
Issue number2
Online published6 Jan 2020
Publication statusPublished - 5 Feb 2020


Crystalline coordination architectures with coordinatively unsaturated metal sites are of great importance for their attractive properties. Tunable side chains of the 4-formylimidazole here were employed for directing the subcomponent self-assembly of (CuIIN4)2(CuII)2 (1), {(CuIIN4)(CuII)2}n (2), and {L(CuII)2}n (3) under the same solvothermal conditions, giving the structural diversity. The unique square-planar CuII/NiIIN4 units with open metal sites can not only be in situ embedded in 1 and 2, but also be successfully immobilized in {(NiIIN4)2(CuICN)9}n (4) and {(CuIIN4)2(CuICN)9}n (5), through the metalloligand strategy. Enzyme-like substrate-specific activity was observed by employing 5 as a heterogeneous catalyst, which exhibits increased activity and high selectivity toward the catalytic oxidation of 1-phenylethyl alcohol derivatives. This work presents two promising methodologies for the introduction of controllable open metal sites in versatile crystalline coordination complexes and their application in the substrate-selective catalytic oxidation reaction.

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