Preparation and Decomposition of Potassium Alkalide−Lipophilic Crown Ether Complexes in Tetrahydrofuran

Cyclohexano-15-crown-5, cyclohexano-18-crown-6, dicyclohexano-15-crown-5, and dicyclohexano-18-crown-6, but not dicylohexano-16-crown-5, in THF dissolve potassium metal to form dark blue potassium alkalide solutions at ambient temperature. On standing, the potassium alkalide complexes decompose and the solutions turn colorless at differing rates. Identification of the products provides insight into the decomposition mechanism.