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  • photo of Marc-André Légaré, Ph.D.
    01/07/20 - 9:45 AM to 11:00 AM

    Department Seminar: Marc-André Légaré, Ph.D.

    Department Seminar

Metallomimetic Chemistry of Boron: Metal-Free Catalysis and Nitrogen Fixation at a Main Group Element

graphic on Marc-Andre Legare's research on use of boron compounds for small-molecule activation, reduction processes, and organic functionalization reactions
The importance of transition metals (TMs) in modern catalysis cannot be overstated. TM-based catalysts enable processes that are of tremendous human and economic importance; they have innumerable applications in many industrial sectors. However, the toxicity, price and natural scarcity of many elements that are used in TM catalysis fuel an interest for the development of metal-free catalysts based on the main-group elements. However, contrary to many catalytically-active TM complexes, classical main-group compounds do not possess the combination of empty and filled orbitals that is crucial for the complex electronic processes involved in the elemental steps of catalytic cycles. The development of catalysts based on the p-block elements thus requires the design and application of unique strategies. In this seminar, I will present an approach for the rational design of such strategies: combining predictive computational calculations with a bottom-up experimental investigation of metal-free reactions. Results obtained through this method include the use of boron compounds for small-molecule activation, reduction processes, and organic functionalization reactions. I will discuss systems that involve the combination of single and multiple active sites in order to mimic the electronic environment of TM complexes. Similarities and differences in the reactivity of main-group compounds and TM complexes will also be highlighted.

Marc-André Légaré

Marc-André Légaré, Ph.D., is a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada Postdoctoral Fellow at the Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, studying the reactivity of novel low-valent boron compounds. He earned his doctorate, and master’s and bachelor’s degrees at the Université Laval, Québec. Some of his research encompassed the computational design of catalytic systems, the investigation of B-heteroaromatic compounds, and the metal-free catalysts for small molecule activation and building block synthesis. 

  • Event Details

    Location: 331 Smith Hall
    Host: Professor Connie Lu
    • Marc-André Légaré, Ph.D.
    • Institute of Inorganic Chemistry
    • Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg
    • Bavaria

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