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A spin-coupled study of the Claisen rearrangement of allyl vinyl ether

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JournalTHEORETICAL CHEMISTRY ACCOUNTS
DatePublished - Apr 2006
Issue number4
Volume115
Number of pages9
Pages (from-to)212-220
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

The spin-coupled (SC) form of modern valence bond (VB) theory is utilised to examine the electronic structure of the transition state (TS) and the electronic reaction mechanism of the Claisen rearrangement of allyl vinyl ether. The differences between the spin-coupling patterns and orbital overlap integrals at the optimised TS geometries obtained using B3LYP/6-31G*, MP2/6-31G* and MP4(SDQ)/6-31G* wavefunctions are minimal, and the SC picture suggests that the TS is non-aromatic. SC calculations along the intrinsic reaction coordinates computed at these three levels of theory also produce near identical results. The SC wavefunctions at different stages of the reaction provide easily interpretable orbital diagrams which, in combination with the changes in the orbital overlap integrals, indicate an electronic reaction mechanism involving concerted, though not entirely synchronous, bond breaking and bond formation processes. The evolution of the active space spin-coupling pattern, which is closely related to the classical VB concept of resonance, combined with the changes in the orbital overlap integrals, show that the reaction path involves a region in which the electronic structure of the reacting system becomes similar to that of benzene. This suggests that during the Claisen rearrangement the reacting system can attain moderately aromatic character but that this does not necessarily happen at the TS. The results of the SC analysis indicate that the most appropriate schematic representation of the Claisen rearrangement is furnished by a homolytic mechanism in which six harpoons describe the changes in the bonding pattern from reactant to product.

    Research areas

  • spin-coupled approach, Claisen rearrangement, reaction mechanisms, valence-bond theory, AB-INITIO CALCULATIONS, DIELS-ALDER REACTION, VALENCE-BOND THEORY, DENSITY-FUNCTIONAL THEORY, TRANSITION STRUCTURES, COPE REARRANGEMENT, STATES, AROMATICITY, MECHANISM, ENERGIES

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