Reactivity of zinc halide complexes containing camphor-derived guanidine ligands with technical rac-lactide

Angela Metz, Joshua Heck, Clara Marie Gohlke, Konstantin Kröckert, Yannik Louven, Paul McKeown, Alexander Hoffmann, Matthew D. Jones, Sonja Herres-Pawlis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (SciVal)


Three new zinc complexes with monoamine-guanidine hybridligands have been prepared, characterized by X-ray crystallography and NMR spectroscopy, and tested in the solvent-free ring-opening polymerization of rac-lactide. Initially the ligands were synthesized from camphoric acid to obtain TMGca and DMEGca and then reacted with zinc(II) halides to form zinc complexes. All complexes have a distorted tetrahedral coordination. They were utilized as catalysts in the solvent-free polymerization of technical rac-lactide at 150 °C. Colorless polylactide (PLA) can be produced and after 2 h conversion up to 60% was reached. Furthermore, one zinc chlorido complex was tested with different qualities of lactide (technical and recrystallized) and with/without the addition of benzyl alcohol as a co-initiator. The kinetics were monitored by in situ FT-IR or 1H NMR spectroscopy. All kinetic measurements show first-order behavior with respect to lactide. The influence of the chiral complexes on the stereocontrol of PLA was examined. Moreover, with MALDI-ToF measurements the end-group of the obtained polymer was determined. DFT and NBO calculations give further insight into the coordination properties. All in all, these systems are robust against impurities and water in the lactide monomer and show great catalytic activity in the ROP of lactide.

Original languageEnglish
Article number85
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 30 Nov 2017


  • Guanidine
  • Polylactide
  • Ring-opening polymerization
  • Zinc

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Inorganic Chemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'Reactivity of zinc halide complexes containing camphor-derived guanidine ligands with technical rac-lactide'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this