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Author ORCID ID is 0000000265016594
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  1. Here, we report a new family of preorganized bislactam- 1,10-phenanthroline (BLPhen) complexants that possess both hard and soft donor atoms within a convergent cavity and show unprecedented extraction strength for the trivalent fblock metal ions. BLPhen ligands with saturated and unsaturated δ-lactam rings have notable differences in their affinity and selectivity for Am(III) over Eu(III), with the latter being the most selective mixed N,O-donor extractant of Am(III) reported to date. Saturated BLPhen was crystallized with five Ln(III) nitrates to form charge-neutral 1:1 complexes in the solid state. DFT calculations further elaborate on the variety of effects that dictate the performancemore » of these preorganized compounds.« less
  2. The role of solvent in molecular recognition systems is under-researched and often ignored, especially when the solvent is considered “non-interacting”. This study concerns the role of toluene solvent in cesium(I) recognition by calix[4]pyrrole. We show that π-donor interactions bind toluene molecules onto the open face of the cation-receptor complex, thus “capping the calix.” As a result, by characterizing this unusual aromatically-saturated complex, we show how “non-interacting” aromatic solvents can directly coordinate receptor-bound cations and thus influence recognition.
  3. Potentiometric and spectroscopic techniques were combined with DFT calculations to probe the coordination environment and determine thermodynamic features of trivalent f-element complexation by N-hydroxyethyl-diethylenetriamine-N,N',N",N"-tetraacetic acid, HEDTTA. Ligand protonation constants and lanthanide stability constants were determined using potentiometry. Five protonation constants were accessible in I = 2.0 M (H +/Na +)ClO 4. UV–vis spectroscopy was used to determine stability constants for Nd 3+ and Am 3+ complexation with HEDTTA. Luminescence spectroscopy indicates two water molecules in the inner coordination sphere of the Eu/HEDTTA complex, suggesting HEDTTA is heptadentate. Luminescence data was supported by DFT calculations, which demonstrate that substitution of themore » acetate pendant arm by a N-hydroxyethyl group weakens the metal–nitrogen bond. This bond elongation is reflected in HEDTTA’s ability to differentiate trivalent actinides from trivalent lanthanides. The trans-lanthanide Ln/HEDTTA complex stability trend is analogous to Ln/DTPA complexation; however, the loss of one chelate ring resulting from structural substitution weakens the complexation by ~3 orders of magnitude. Successful separation of trivalent americium from trivalent lanthanides was demonstrated when HEDTTA was utilized as aqueous holdback complexant in a liquid–liquid system. Time-dependent extraction studies for HEDTTA were compared to diethylenetriamine-N,N,N',N",N"-pentaacetic acid (DTPA) and N-hydroxyethyl-ethylenediamine-N,N',N'-triacetic acid (HEDTA). The results presented here indicate substantially enhanced phase-transfer kinetic rates for mixtures containing HEDTTA.« less

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