The Chemical Structure, Dynamics and Mechanisms Program supports Professor R. A. Flowers from Lehigh University on an "International Collaboration in Chemistry" project. The foreign investigator is Professor A. GansÃ¤uer from Germany, whose contribution to the collaborative project will be supported by the German Science Foundation (DFG). The researchers will develop metal catalysts for the functionalization of aromatic compounds via homolytic substitutions employing carbon centered radicals. The formation of C-C bonds is of fundamental importance and new developments will contribute to the sustainable synthesis of organic compounds, in particular aromatic compounds. The German PI provides expertise in the use of radical catalysis in organic synthesis, the US PI in mechanistic studies of organic reactions.
Professors Flowers and GansÃ¤uer will pursue a detailed understanding of catalytic titanocene based radical reactions to provide efficient and selective approaches for arene functionalization. Arenes are at the center of many chemical commodity products such as styrene. One of the goals of this work is to furnish optically enriched aryl-2-propanols, which form the building blocks for the synthesis of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS). The international team will include undergraduate and graduate students who will receive multidisciplinary training in techniques not typically covered in standard organic chemistry laboratories.