Title

A Mechanochemical Study of the Effects of Compression On a Diels-Alder Reaction

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

8-1-2016

School

Polymer Science and Engineering

Abstract

We examine the effects of compressive external forces on the mechanisms of the parent Diels-Alder (DA) reaction between butadiene and ethylene. Reaction pathways and transition states were calculated using the nudged elastic band method within a mechanochemical framework at the CASSCF(6,6)/6-31G**, as well as the B3LYP/6-311++G** levels of theory. Our results suggest that compressive hydrostatic pressure lowers the energy barrier for the parent DA reaction while suppressing the undesirable side reaction, thereby leading to a direct increase in the yield of cyclohexene. Compressive pressure also increases the exothermicity of the parent DA reaction, which would lead to increased temperatures in a reaction vessel and thereby indirectly increase the yield of cyclohexene. Our estimates indicate that the compression used in our study corresponds to a range of 68 MPa–1410 MPa.

Publication Title

The Journal of Chemical Physics

Volume

145

Issue

7

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