Copper (I)-Catalyzed Amination of Aryl Halides in Liquid Ammonia

Pengju Ji, Michael Page, John Atherton

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68 Citations (Scopus)


The amination of aryl halides in liquid ammonia (LNH3) is catalyzed by a copper(I) salt/ascorbate system to yield primary aromatic amines in good to excellent yields. The low concentrations of catalyst required and the ease of product isolation suggest that this process has potential industrial applications. Commonly used ligands for analogous metal-catalyzed reactions are not effective. The rate of amination of iodobenzene in liquid ammonia is first order in copper(I) catalyst concentration. The small Hammett ρ = 0.49 for the amination of 4-substituted iodobenzenes in liquid ammonia at 25 °C indicates that the C–I bond is not significantly broken in the transition state structure and that there is a small generation of negative charge in the aryl ring, which is compatible with the oxidative addition of the copper ion being rate limiting.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7471-7478
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Organic Chemistry
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2012


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