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Inorg Chem. 2008 Sep 15;47(18):8278-85. doi: 10.1021/ic8008893. Epub 2008 Aug 12.

Stabilization of plutonium(III) in the Preyssler polyoxometalate.

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  • 1Chemical Sciences & Engineering Division, Argonne National Laboratory, 9700 South Cass Avenue, Argonne, Illinois 60439-4831, USA.


The Na(+) ion encapsulated within the Preyssler heteropolyoxoanion, [NaP5W30O110](14-), was exchanged with Pu(III) under hydrothermal conditions to obtain [Pu(III)P5W30O110](12-) (abbreviated [PuPA](12-)) with hybrid electrochemical properties resulting from the combination of the key redox behaviors of the Pu cation and the P-W-O anion. The electroanalytical chemistry of this two-center, multielectron redox system in a 1 M HCl electrolyte shows that Pu(III) is oxidized to Pu(IV) at the half-wave potential, E(1/2), of +0.960 V versus Ag/AgCl, which is 0.197 V more positive than the corresponding electrode potential for the Pu(III) aqua ion also in 1 M HCl, indicating the stabilization of the trivalent Pu cation by its encapsulation in the Preyssler polyoxometalate (POM). This effect is uncommon in actinide-POM chemistry, wherein electrode potential shifts of the opposite nature (to more negative values), leading to the stabilization of the tetravalent ions by complexation, are renowned. Moreover, in cyclic voltammetry measurements of the Pu(III) aqua ion and [PuPA](12-), the peak currents, i(p), for the one-electron Pu(III)/Pu(IV) processes show different dependencies with the scan rate, nu. The former shows proportionality with nu(1/2), indicating freely diffusing species, whereas the latter shows proportionality with nu, indicating a surface-confined one. The first of the five successive two-electron, W-centered reduction processes in [PuPA](12-) occurs at E(1/2) = -0.117 V versus Ag/AgCl, which is 1.077 V less than the E(1/2) for the Pu(III)/Pu(IV) oxidation, thereby providing an experimental, electrochemical measure of the highest occupied molecular orbital/lowest unoccupied molecular orbital energy gap, which compares well with values previously obtained by density-functional theory, complete active space-self consistent field, and post-Hartree-Fock calculations for a series of M(n+)-exchanged systems, [MPA](n-15) for 1 < or = n < or = 4 (Fernandez, J. A.; Lopez, X.; Bo, C.; de Graff, C.; Baerends, E. J.; Poblet, J. M. J. Am Chem. Soc. 2007, 129, 12244-12253). It was not possible to prepare the Np-exchanged Preyssler anion in the manner of [PuPA](12-), because of the instability of tri- and tetravalent Np to oxidation and the formation of the neptunyl(V) ion, which also could not be exchanged for Na(+).

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