The catalytic activity of the dichlorodioxomolybdenum (MoO2Cl2·2DMSO) complex was investigated for oxidation
of aromatic alcohols to corresponding aldehydes using dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) as an oxidant under solvent
free conditions. The catalyst showed very high conversion and selectivity for aldehyde with high turnover number up to
1000 and high turnover frequency. For substituted benzyl alcohols there was increase in the conversion with electron donating
substituents whereas there was decrease in conversion with electron withdrawing substituents. Interestingly though,
the catalyst is homogeneous in nature, it was efficiently recycled even up to five recycles without appreciable loss in the
activity. Based on the products obtained during reaction the mechanism for oxidation has been proposed.
Keywords: Dimethyl sulfoxide, Homogeneous catalysis, MoO2Cl2·2DMSO, Oxidation, Primary alcohols.
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