Samuel Mitton, Robin Hamilton and Jeffrey M. Stryker.
Department of Chemistry, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
Replacing petrochemically derived commodity and specialty chemicals with ones sourced from renewable feedstocks requires the development of new technologies capable of cheaply and effectively mediating the transformation. Transition metal based catalysis has a long history of usefulness in upgrading non-renewable chemical feedstocks to value added products and are uniquely positioned to adapt to the demands of the market to produce products from waste streams in the forestry and agricultural sector, among others. Building on existing knowledge and discoveries, we have designed base metal cluster complexes with the hopes of exploiting their reactive potential to convert waste feedstock to value added compounds via reduction and deoxygenation under relatively mild conditions. The design and synthesis of the cluster complexes will be detailed along with preliminary results in the catalytic reduction of carbonyl groups with H2 and their potential usefulness in biomass upgrading.