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Highlights in Chemical Science

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Gallium forms new relationships


11 January 2007

Bonds between gallium and two different alkaline earth metals have been formed for the first time by scientists in Germany.

Gallium-barium complex
The first gallium-barium bond
Peter Roesky and colleagues at the Free University of Berlin, Germany, have successfully made two compounds containing a bond between gallium and two different alkaline earth metals, strontium and barium. Whilst theoretical studies had predicted these combinations, compounds containing a bond between these metals were previously unknown says Roesky.  The researchers confirmed the structures of these novel compounds using x-ray crystallography.

New metal-to-metal bonds will interest researchers in many areas of the natural sciences, says Roesky.  He added that similar compounds have found applications in biology, catalysis and nanotechnology. 

We are now exploring the stability and reactivity of these bonds, says Roesky.  He added that he hopes to synthesise more compounds with unusual combinations of metal-to-metal bonds in the near future.  

Nina Athey-Pollard

References

Gallium(I)-alkaline earth metal donor-acceptor bonds

M Wiecko, P W Roesky, P Nava, R Ahlrichs and S N. Konchenko, Chem. Commun., 2007

DOI: 10.1039/b614165j