Ordering of Ruthenium Cluster Carbonyls in Mesoporous Silica

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Science  01 May 1998:
Vol. 280, Issue 5364, pp. 705-708
DOI: 10.1126/science.280.5364.705

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The anionic ruthenium cluster carbonylates [Ru6C(CO)16]2– or [H2Ru10(CO)25]2–interspersed with bis(triphenylphosphino)iminium counterions (PPN+) are incorporated from solution into the pores of MCM-41 mesoporous silica (3 nanometers in diameter), where they form tightly packed arrays. These arrays were shown by high-resolution transmission electron microscopy, Fourier transform optical diffraction, and computer simulations to be well ordered both along and perpendicular to the axis of the cylindrical pores. In their denuded state produced by gentle thermolysis, the cluster carbonylates yield nanoparticles of ruthenium that are less well ordered than their assimilated precursors but show good activity as hydrogenation catalysts for hexene and cyclooctene. In both their as-prepared and denuded states, these encapsulated clusters are likely to exhibit interesting electronic and other properties.

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