A Recyclable Chiral Ru Catalyst for Enantioselective Olefin Metathesis. Efficient Catalytic Asymmetric Ring-Opening/Cross Metathesis in Air

The synthesis and structure of a new chiral bidentate imidazolinylidene ligand and a derived chiral Ru-based carbene are disclosed. The Ru complex is stereogenic at the metal center; it can be prepared in >98% diastereoselectivity and purified by silica gel chromatography with undistilled solvents. The air-stable Ru complex efficiently catalyzes ring-closing and ring-opening metathesis and is recyclable. The chiral complex is highly effective (0.5−10 mol % loading) in promoting enantioselective ring-opening/cross metathesis reactions (up to >98% ee). These enantioselective transformations can be effected in air, with unpurified solvent and with substrates that would only polymerize with Mo-based catalysts.