Photocatalytic Redox Processes in Aqueous Ethanol Solutions of Mixed Cobalt Cyanide Complexes

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Department of Chemistry


Anaerobic aqueous ethanol solutions of pentacyanocobaltate(II) or mixed complexes of cobalt(II) with cyanide and ehtylenediamine yielded an initial ratio of 1:1 hydrogen and acetaldehyde upon irradiation with a high pressure quartz mercury vapor lamp. In solutions containing ethylenediamine the yield of acetaldehyde was much less. The relative amount of acetaldehyde present decreased during the irradiation which control experiments showed was due to nonphotochemical reactions. The cobalt complexes are truly catalytic with the moles of hydrogen produced many times greater than possible from the nonphotochemical reaction of pentacyanocobatate and water. The identities of the precipitates which appeared during the course of the photocatalytic process have been investigated.

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© 1994

Publication Title

Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology A: Chemistry