Computational Chemistry and Molecular Modeling
Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics
Wiley InterScience Backfile Collection 1832-2000
Chemistry and Pharmacology
The mechanism and kinetics for the decomposition of β-hydroxypropaldehyde, primary and secondary β-hydroxyketones, were studied by using ab initio RHF/6-31G and RHF/6-31G* methods. The activation barriers of these reactions were refined to be 39.57, 40.10, and 36.80 kcal mol-1 at the MP2/ /RHF/6-31G* level, respectively. The calculated results show that each decomposition is a concerted process with hydrogen transferring and bond breaking via a six-membered cyclic transition state. The thermal rate constants of the decomposition of primary and secondary β-hydroxyketones were obtained by calculating microcanonical probability fluxes through each transition state. It is theoretically confirmed that methyl substitution at the hydroxyl carbon of β-hydroxyketones causes a small enhancement in rates. The theoretical investigations of the mechanism and the rate constants are in agreement with the experimental results. © 1997 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
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