Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 55, 8736–8739 (2016).

DOI: 10.1002/anie.201603690

Exergonic and Spontaneous Production of Radicals through Beryllium Bonds

High-level ab initio calculations show that the formation of radicals, by the homolytic bond fission of Y−R (Y=F, OH, NH2; R=CH3, NH2, OH, F, SiH3, PH2, SH, Cl, NO) bonds is dramatically favored by the association of the molecule with BeX2 (X=H and Cl) derivatives. This finding is a consequence of two concomitant effects, the significant activation of the Y−R bond after the formation of the beryllium bond, and the huge stabilization of the F. (OH., NH2.) radical upon BeX2 attachment. In those cases where R is an electronegative group, the formation of the radicals is not only exergonic, but spontaneous.