Posts Tagged ‘lithium metal’

The NMR spectra of methano[10]annulene and its dianion. The diatropic/paratropic inversion.

Saturday, October 26th, 2013

The 1H NMR spectrum of an aromatic molecule such as benzene is iconic; one learns that the unusual chemical shift of the protons (~δ 7-8 ppm) is due to their deshielding by a diatropic ring current resulting from the circulation of six aromatic π-electrons following the Hückel 4n+2 rule. But rather less well-known is the spectacular inversion of these effects as induced by the paratropic circulation of 4n electrons. A 4n+2 rule can be converted to a 4n one by the addition of two electrons, and chemically this can be done by reduction with lithium metal to form a dianion. Fortunately, this experiment has been done for a molecule known as methano[10]annulene. This is a 4n+2 aromatic molecule 1 with ten π-electrons (n=2) that can be reduced with lithium metal to form an ion-pair 2 comprising lithium cations and the twelve π-electron (4n, n=3) methano[10]annulene dianion.[1]



  1. D. Schmalz, and H. Günther, "1,6‐Methano[10]annulene Dianion, a Paratropic 12π‐Electron Dianion with a C10 Perimeter", Angewandte Chemie International Edition in English, vol. 27, pp. 1692-1693, 1988.