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Bis-lactam-1,10-phenanthroline (BLPhen), a New Type of Preorganized Mixed N,O-Donor Ligand That Separates Am(III) over Eu(III) with Exceptionally High Efficiency

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Journal Name
Inorganic Chemistry
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We report a new family of preorganized bis-lactam-1,10-phenanthroline (BLPhen) complexants that possess both hard and soft donor atoms within a convergent cavity and show unprecedented extraction strength for the trivalent f-block metal ions. BLPhen ligands with saturated and unsaturated δ-lactam rings have notable differences in their affinity and selectivity for Am(III) over Eu(III), with the latter being the most selective mixed N,O-donor extractant of Am(III) reported to date. Saturated BLPhen was crystallized with five Ln(III) nitrates to form charge-neutral 1:1 complexes in the solid state. DFT calculations further elaborate on the variety of effects that dictate the performance of these preorganized compounds.