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Phys Chem Chem Phys. 2013 Jun 28;15(24):9823-32. doi: 10.1039/c3cp51137e.

Spontaneous sulfur dioxide activation by Group V metal (V, Nb, Ta) atoms in excess argon at cryogenic temperatures.

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  • 1Department of Chemistry, Key Laboratory of Yangtze River Water Environment, Ministry of Education Tongji University, Shanghai, China.


Reactions of laser-ablated V, Nb and Ta atoms with SO2 in excess argon during condensation gave new absorptions in the M=O stretching region, which were assigned to metal sulfide oxides SMO2 and anions SMO2(-) (M = V, Nb, Ta). The metal oxide complex OV(η(2)-SO) was also identified through the V=O and the characteristic side-on coordinated S-O stretching modes. The assignments of major vibrational modes were confirmed by appropriate S(18)O2 and (34)SO2 isotopic shifts, and density functional frequency calculations. DFT calculations were employed to study the behavior of reactions of Group V bare metal atoms with SO2, and a representative profile was derived which not only showed the preferred coordinating fashion of metal atoms but also tracked the path of S-O bond activation. The η(2)-O,O' bridge coordinated complexes are preferred with energy decreases of ca. 50 kcal mol(-1) for all three metals, which facilitate the activation of two S-O bonds in succession and finally direct the reaction to the most stable molecules SMO2 (M = V, Nb, Ta) along the potential energy surface (PES). Finally the SMO2 molecules capture electrons to give anions SMO2(-) with about 3.6 eV electron affinities based on DFT calculations.

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