The bulky alkyl groups C(SiMe3)3, R, and C(SiMe2Ph)3, R', have been widely used in an exceptionally fruitful programme of research on the organometallic compounds of the p- and f-block elements. Recently the emphasis has been switched to ligands of the types Ne3Si)2(XSiMe2)C and (XMe2Si)3C with similar bulk around the central carbon atom but containing one or more functional substituents on silicon potentially able to act as electron donors in intra- or intermolecular co-ordination.
The proposed project is concerned with the generation and use of new ligand sources (Me3Si) 2(R2PMe2Si)CY and (R2PMe2Si) 3CY where Y = H, I or Li. These should react with -transition metal zero-valent complexes or halides to give derivatives containing both metal-carbon and metal-phosphorus bonds. The chemistry of the phosphorus-containing ligands will first be developed with Main Group and lanthanide elements but the ultimate aim will be to obtain novel compounds of Groups 8-10 and special emphasis will be on Pt. Structures will be determined by X-ray diffraction or spectroscopic methods and the potential of new compounds as catalysts will be explored.