We performed density functional theory computations to study the structural and electronic properties as the basis of ethylene addition activity for [Ni(XC)4]n (X = Se, S)-extended lattices. We demonstrated that the mechanism of ethylene cycloaddition to a periodic [Ni(SeC)4]n two-dimensional (2D) network is analogous to that previously described for [Ni(SC)4]n 2D sheets and similar to the metal bis(dithiolene) molecular complexes [M(S2C2R2)2] (M = Ni, Pd, Pt, Co, Cu). These nanosheet materials avoid decomposition upon olefin addition, which is one of the main limitations of the molecular metal bis(dithiolene) complexes, as we find the decomposition processes to be thermodynamically unfavorable. Our calculations also suggest that the preferred conformation of the [Ni(SeC)4]n bilayer lattice is parallel displaced, with the Se atoms positioned above the Ni atoms, which is different from the eclipsed conformation found for [Ni(SC)4]n. We also managed to optimize an adduct of [Ni(SC)4]n in the bilayer form, which exceed the ethylene coverage of molecular complexes. We calculate that the preferred three-dimensional geometry of the stacked sheets is eclipsed because of strong van der Waals interactions. Such an arrangement of the sheets indicates that these materials should be highly porous, pointing to the high capacity for olefin bindings. Indeed, a few moderately stable ethylene adducts have been located. Owing to their unique structures and chemical reactivity, these newly predicted materials can be potentially developed as electrocatalysts for olefin purification.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Surfaces, Coatings and Films