Author ORCID Identifier

Year of Publication


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation


Arts and Sciences



First Advisor

Dr. John P. Selegue


Development of synthetic routes toward two general organometallic frameworks was undertaken. The first project involved synthetic attempts of substituted and unsubstituted ferroceno[c]thiophene while the second one was the synthesis of 1,2-dithienylmetallocenes. The long-term goal of this work is to lay the foundations for study of electronic, electrochromic, redox, and optical properties of thiophene-based materials integrated with organometallic systems such as ferrocene, ruthenocene and cymantrene. The synthetic pathway for the target molecule in the first project involved converting 1,2-bis(hydroxymethyl)ferrocene to 1,2-bis(thiouroniummethyl)ferrocene with thiourea under acidic conditions. Refluxing the salt in base followed by acidification resulted in 1,2-bis(mercaptomethyl)ferrocene, which is oxidized to the cyclic ferroceno[d]-1,2-dithiane. Ring contraction of cyclic dithiane gave the thioether, ferroceno[c]-2,5-dihydrothiophene. Periodate oxidation of the thioether gave ferroceno[c]-2,5-dihydrothiophene-S-oxide (1), a potential precursor for ferroceno[c]thiophene via Pummerer dehydration. Attempts to dehydrate 1 and to trap the resulting thiophene in situ indicated instability of the target compound. Synthesis of ferroceno[c]thiophene with electron-donating as well as electron-withdrawing substituents at the 2,5-positions of the thiophene ring was attempted.

1,2–Dithienylethenes and their derivatives have gained increased attention due to their exceptional photochromic property. They tend to be thermally irreversible but photochemically reversible, which is a vital for their potential use in optical memories, switches and other optoelectronic applications. Inspiration of the second project was that incorporation of 1,2-dithienyl systems into metallocenes would enhance the general properties of the molecule, including stability, fatigue resistance, solid-state reactivity and higher sensitivity. 1,2-Dithienylferrocene was successfully synthesized. The synthetic pathway for 1,2-dithienylferrocene involved the reaction of α-bromo-3-acetyl-2,5-dimethylthiophene (1) with ethyl 4-(2,5-dimethylthiophen-3-yl)-3-oxobutanoate (2) to give 2,3-diarylcyclopent-2-en-1-one (3).

Compounds 1 and 2 were synthesized following literature methods. Compound 3 was then converted to its cyclopentadienide form by first reducing the ketone to alcohol using LAH, followed by dehydration and then deprotonation of the substituted cyclic diene using butyllithium to give 1,2-bis(2,5-dimethylthiophene)-2,4-cyclopentadien-1-yl)lithium (4). [Fe(fluorenyl)(Cp)] was then used as a transfer reagent and reacted with 4 to yield the target compound.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)