Electrochemical Synthesis of Gold-N-Heterocyclic Carbene Complexes**

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An electrochemical synthesis of gold(I)-N-heterocyclic carbene (Au-NHC) complexes has been developed. The electrochemical methodology uses only imidazolium salts, gold metal electrodes, and electricity to produce these complexes with hydrogen gas as the only by-product. This high-yielding and operationally simple procedure has been used to produce eight mononuclear and three dinuclear Au-NHC complexes. The electrochemical procedure facilitates a clean reaction with no by-products. As such, Au-NHC complexes can be directly transferred to catalytic reactions without work-up or purification. The Au-NHC complexes were produced on-demand and tested as catalysts in a vinylcyclopropanation reaction. All mononuclear Au-NHC complexes performed similarly to or better than the isolated complexes.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere202303161
Number of pages10
JournalChemistry - A European Journal
Issue number2
Early online date24 Oct 2023
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jan 2024


  • catalysis
  • electrochemistry
  • gold
  • N-Heterocyclic carbene
  • synthesis


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