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J Am Chem Soc. 2007 Sep 19;129(37):11551-68. Epub 2007 Aug 24.

Electrochemical, spectroscopic, and DFT study of C60(CF3)n frontier orbitals (n = 2-18): the link between double bonds in pentagons and reduction potentials.

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  • 1Chemistry Department, Moscow State University, Moscow, 119992, Russia. popov@phys.chem.msu.ru


The frontier orbitals of 22 isolated and characterized C(60)(CF(3))(n) derivatives, including seven reported here for the first time, have been investigated by electronic spectroscopy (n = 2 [1], 4 [1], 6 [2], 8 [5], 10 [6], 12 [3]; the number of isomers for each composition is shown in square brackets) fluorescence spectroscopy (n = 10 [4]), cyclic voltammetry under air-free conditions (all compounds with n <or= 12), ESR spectroscopy of C(60)(CF(3))(n)- radical anions at 25 degrees C (n = 4 [1] and 10 [1]), and quantum chemical calculations at the DFT level of theory (all compounds including n = 16 [3] and 18 [2]). DFT calculations are also reported for several hypothetical C(60)(CF(3))(n) derivatives. The X-ray structure of one of the compounds, 1,6,11,16,18,26,36,41,44,57-C(60)(CF(3))(10), is reported here for the first time. Most of the compounds with n <or= 12 exhibit two or three quasi-reversible reductions at scan rates from 20 mV s(-1) up to 5.0 V s(-1), respectively. The 18 experimental 0/- E(1/2) values (vs C(60)(0/-)) are a linear function of the DFT-predicted LUMO energies (average E1/2 deviation from the least-squares line is 0.02 V). This linear relationship was used to predict the 0/- E(1/2) values for the n = 16 and 18 derivatives, and none of the predicted values is more positive than the 0/- E(1/2) value for one of the isomers of C(60)(CF(3))(10). In general, reduction potentials for the 0/- couple are shifted anodically relative to the C(60)(0/-) couple. However, the 0/- E(1/2) values for a given composition are strongly dependent on the addition pattern of the CF3 groups. In addition, LUMO energies for isomers of C(60)(X)(n) (n = 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, and 12) that are structurally related to many of the CF(3) derivatives were calculated and compared for X = CH(3), H, Ph, NH(2), CH(2)F, CHF(2), F, NO(2), and CN. The experimental and computational results for the C(60)(CF(3))(n) compounds and the computational results for more than 50 additional C(60)(X)(n) compounds provide new insights about the frontier orbitals of C(60)(X)(n) derivatives. For a given substituent, X, the addition pattern is as important, if not more important in many cases, than the number of substituents, n, in determining E(1/2) values. Those addition patterns with double bonds in pentagons having two C(sp(2)) nearest neighbors result in the strongest electron acceptors.

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