Single or Double? A Radical Approach to Frustrated Lewis Pairs

When: 20 August 2024, 15:00 – 16:00 BST
Where: Online

Frustrated Lewis pairs (FLP) are molecules (or a combination of two molecules) which contain a Lewis acidic and Lewis basic sites and are often derived from the p-block elements. The acidic and basic centres work cooperatively to activate small molecules such as H2, CO2, alkenes and alkynes in a similar manner to that of transition metals. This has changed the view of these elements and has made them more useful in the field of catalysis. Generally the mechanism of these reactions has been proposed to proceed via a two electron pathway, but recent results have suggested that radicals and single electron pathways may be involved. This talk will highlight our results in Lewis acid catalysis and frustrated Lewis pair chemistry in both two and one electron pathways.

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Photo of speaker Rebecca Helen

Rebecca Melen studied for her undergraduate and PhD degrees at the University of Cambridge, completing her PhD in 2012 with Prof. Wright. Following postdoctoral studies with Prof. Stephan in Toronto and with Prof. Gade in Heidelberg, she took up a position at Cardiff University in 2014, where she is now a professor in inorganic chemistry. In 2018, she was awarded an EPSRC early career fellowship. She is the recipient of the 2019 RSC Harrison Meldola Memorial Prize and a 2022 Philip Leverhulme Prize in Chemistry. Her research interests lie in main group chemistry and the applications of main group Lewis acids in synthesis and catalysis. When not in the lab she enjoys being outdoors and spending her time with her horses.

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