Catalysis of electrochemical reduction of weak acids to produce H 2: Role of O-H..S hydrogen bonding

Jinzhu Chen, Aaron K. Vannucci, Charles A. Mebi, Noriko Okumura, Susan C. Borowski, L. Tori Lockett, Matthew Swenson, Dennis L. Lichtenberger, Dennis H. Evans, Richard S. Glass

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The role of intramolecular OH.. S hydrogen bonding in the electrochemical reduction of protons from acetic acid using biomimetically inspired catalysts has been studied. The catalysts, hydroquinone moieties annulated to an Fe 2S2(CO)6 core, were synthesized by piperidine-mediated conjugate addition of the dithiol Fe2(SH) 2(CO)6 to quinones in 26-76% yields. These complexes catalyze electrochemical H2 production from acetic acid. Evidence for weak intramolecular OH.. Shydrogen bonding in the neutral complexes is presented. Such hydrogen bonding becomes stronger as the charge increases on the sulfur in the electrochemically produced dianions due to "charge assistance," and this has chemical consequences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1288-1292
Number of pages5
JournalPhosphorus, Sulfur and Silicon and the Related Elements
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2011


  • Hydrogen bonding
  • Hydrogen production
  • Hydroquinone

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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