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Platinum Metals Rev., 1990, 34, (3), 143

Uses of Platinum Metals Catalysts

Catalysis of Organic Reactions, Chemical Industries Series Vol. 40 Edited By Dale w. Blackburn, Marcel Dekker, New York, 1990, 354 pages, ISBN 0-8247-8286-0, U.S.$1 15.00 (U.S. and Canada), $138 (elsewhere)

  • M.J.H.R.
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This book summarises a series of papers presented at the Twelfth Conference on the Catalysis of Organic Reactions held in San Antonio, Texas, U.S.A., during April 1988. These meetings provide a useful forum where industrial and academic chemists together with catalyst manufacturers can discuss the state-of-the-art and industrial relevance of catalysis. No fewer than thirteen of the twenty chapters refer to the use of platinum group metal catalysts.

It is timely that a special chapter on chiral catalysis is included as regulatory bodies are requiring more stringent controls on the purity of chiral products and the area is becoming of greater interest to the pharmaceutical and fine chemical industry.

The enantioselective reduction of prochiral alkenes, imines and ketones using variants such as hydrogen gas, transfer hydrogenation and silanes in the presence of homogeneous rhodium catalysts is described by H. Brunner. B. R. James continues this theme by discussing the enantioselective hydrogenation of imines and ketones with catalysts comprising rhodium, iridium or ruthenium and inexpensive ligands derived from naturally occurring acids.

The stereospecific reduction of cinnamic acid is addressed by J. G. Andrade, and D. F. Taber deals with the regio and diastereoselective formation of cyclopentanoids via rhodium acetate-catalysed intramolecular arrangements.

R. L. Augustine traces the development of an understanding of olefin hydrogenation using heterogeneous catalysts including analogies with homogeneous rhodium catalysts. Further chapters refer to the use of supported palladium catalysts. The use of carbon disulphide titrations as a method of testing for mass transfer limitations is exemplified for palladium-on-silica and platinum-on-alumina catalysts by G. V. Smith. V. L. Mylroie considers the reduction of sulphonyl halides to thiols using sulphided palladium-on-carbon catalysts. The development of a palladium-on-silica catalyst for the hydrogenation of acetylenes, which has culminated in the widespread use of this catalyst for the production of vinyl chloride monomer, is reviewed by K. M. Deller.

For palladium catalysed carboalkoxylation reactions W. R. Moser describes the use of novel in situ infra red techniques in order to obtain a better understanding of ester formation. R. F. Heck discusses the catalytic dimerisation of styrene and isomerisation of allylbenzene by cyclopalladated azobenzene complexes.

Two chapters deal with carbonylations. J. F. Knifton describes the application of melt catalysis to the hydroformylation of both linear and internal alkenes, and in discussing the use of pyridine containing polymers in organic chemistry, G. L. Goe draws attention to a heterogenised rhodium catalyst which has higher activity than its homogeneous counter-part for the carbonylation of methanol to acetic acid.

The topics represented in this book are wide-ranging and include Chiral Catalysis, New Catalysis Technologies, Mechanisms in Catalysis and New Catalytic Chemical Processes. It should prove useful to organic chemists involved in catalysis.

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