Synthesis and Spectroscopic Characterization of Low- to High-Valent Weak-Field Lanthanide Complexes

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Gompa, Thaige P.
La Pierre, Henry S.
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Redox chemistry and valence electronic structure of the lanthanides in molecular complexes is a rapidly expanding field of research. The contemporary understanding of the accessible oxidation states of the lanthanide elements and the variability in their electronic structure is the result of several groundbreaking fundamental discoveries. While the lanthanide elements have already found widespread use in technical and consumer applications, the continued reevaluation of basic redox properties is a central chemical concern to establish a more complete description of periodic properties. This continuous development of understanding of valence electronic structure and its connection to oxidation state and coordination environment is essential for the continued development of lanthanides in quantum information science and quantum materials research. Due, in part, to the minimal extension of the valence 4f orbitals in lanthanide complexes, covalent bonding and electronic communication between metal centers, in particular lanthanide-lanthanide metal centers, is nearly non-existent and unexplored. This thesis details the development of new methodology for lanthanide triiodide starting materials for salt metathesis reactions. This thesis also outlines the development of novel lanthanide complexes that exhibit unique electronic structure properties such as vibronic coupling in neutral divalent complexes and intervalence charge transfer in mixed-valent, homobimetallic complexes. Additionally, the first isostructural molecular valences series spanning three oxidation states (Eu2+, Gd3+, and Tb4+) is synthesized and interrogated through high-field and -frequency electronic paramagnetic resonance. This work correlates formal charge, zero-field splitting, and covalency in these lanthanide complexes.
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