Alfred Werner revisited: Some subtleties of complex ion synthesis and isomerism
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NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Comptes Rendus Chimie. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Comptes Rendus Chimie, Vol. 8 (2005). DOI: 10.1016/j.crci.2004.10.013
The synthesis of perhaps the best-known Wernerian complex, [Co(en)3]3+, is very efficient, but nonetheless results in the formation of various side-products. Today, the use of X-ray crystallography to characterise such materials provides new insights into the reaction pathways of the synthesis and the exact forms possible for the products. The structures of cis-[Co(en)2(H2NCH2CH2NH3)Cl]Cl[ZnCl4], cis-[Co(en)2(NH3)Cl]S2O6, [Co(en)(NH2CH2CH2N=CHCH2NH2))Cl][ZnCl4], [Co(en)2(N-CH3en)][Co(CN)6]?2 H2O and [Co(en)2(N-CH3en)][Co(CN)6], are presently discussed in this regard.