A nitrogen-containing organic compound is synthesized from dinitrogen and carbon dioxide

April 8, 2022

Titanium hydride promotes inactive bond cleavage and new bond formation under a mild condition

An international cooperative research team of the RIKEN Cluster for Pioneering Research, the Center for Sustainable Resource Science, and the Dalian University of Technology successfully synthesized an organic compound isocyanate (-N=C=O) from very stable dinitrogen (N2) and carbon dioxide (CO2) molecules under a mild condition using a polymetallic titanium hydride compound.

N2 (N≡N) and CO2 (O=C=O) gases are relatively easily available at low prices. But it is difficult to convert them into useful materials by cutting the N≡N and C=O bonds, both of which are very stable.

In this study, the international collaborative team successfully dissociated N≡N and C=O bonds of dinitrogen and carbon dioxide under a mild condition mediated by a polymetallic titanium hydride compound and further produced isocyanate (-N=C=O) by creating a new N=C bond. Additionally, they revealed the reaction process at the molecular level using X-ray crystallography, spectroscopic techniques, and computational studies.

The results of this research will lead to developing new reaction processes for activation and transformation of inert molecules via breaking inactive bonds and making new chemical bonds as key steps.

Original article
Journal of the American Chemical Society doi:10.1021/jacs.2c01851
Q. Zhuo, J. Yang, Z. Mo, X. Zhou, T. Shima, Y. Luo, Z. Hou,
"Dinitrogen Cleavage and Functionalization with Carbon Dioxide in a Dititanium Dihydride Framework".
Zhaomin Hou; Group Director
Takanori Shima; Senior Research Scientist
Advanced Catalysis Research Group