Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)

College, School or Department Name

Department of Chemistry


Shiyue Fang


A new series of chiral ferrosalen ligands was designed and synthesized. The special feature of the ferrosalen ligands is that the chirality originated from the planar chiral ferrocenyl structure. For most known salen ligands, chirality comes from central and axial chiral centers. The key building block for the construction of these ferrosalen ligands was synthesized stereoselectively by a chiral auxiliary approach. This approach does not consume any chiral material, and does not require chiral HPLC resolution. Using this method, nine ligands were prepared using ferrocene as the starting material. In addition, the steric hindrance was modulated by changing the cyclopentadienyl group to the more bulky pentamethylcyclopentadienyl- and pentaphenylcyclopentadienyl- groups. The structure of these ligands was established by 1H and 13C NMR. The structure of a ferrosalen-Cu (II) complex was determined by single crystal X-ray diffraction analysis.

All the chiral ferrosalen ligands were tested in catalytic asymmetric reactions including enantioselective carbonyl-ene reaction, enantioselective Strecker-type reaction and enantioselective silylcyanation. For the carbonyl-ene reaction, up to 99% yield and 29% enantiomeric excess (ee) were obtained using ligand-Co (III) as the catalysts; For the Strecker-type reaction, a maximum of 20% ee was obtained using ligand-AlCl as the catalyst; For the silylcyanation reaction, up to 99% yield and 26% ee were obtained using ligand-AlCl as the catalyst.

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