A New Motif in Halogen Bonding: Cooperative Intermolecular S-Br⋅⋅⋅O, O⋅⋅⋅F, and F⋅⋅⋅F Associations in the Crystal Packing of α,ω-Di(sulfonyl bromide) Perfluoroalkanes

Chem Asian J. 2023 Mar 14;18(6):e202300012. doi: 10.1002/asia.202300012. Epub 2023 Feb 14.


We recently reported the first examples of S-Cl⋅⋅⋅O halogen bonding complemented by short F⋅⋅⋅F contacts between neighboring chains that resulted in stabilized crystals of ClSO2 (CF2 )4 SO2 Cl and ClSO2 (CF2 )6 SO2 Cl. More recently, other researchers studied our crystallographic data further using an Independent Gradient Model (IGM), and they suggested if one goes beyond IUPAC's proposed 'less than the sum of the van der Waals radii' criterion that even more noncovalent interactions between fluorine atoms on neighboring chains as well as Cl⋅⋅⋅Cl, Cl⋅⋅⋅S, O⋅⋅⋅F, and O⋅⋅⋅S attractive interactions can be found. With that said, we have prepared samples of the related BrSO2 (CF2 )n SO2 Br derivatives (where n=4, 6, 8, and others), which give rise to even stronger S-Br⋅⋅⋅O halogen bonding interactions complemented minimally by O⋅⋅⋅F and F⋅⋅⋅F intermolecular interactions as shown by X-ray crystallography and computational chemistry using IGM isosurface plots. Additional spectroscopic characterization (multinuclear NMR, FT-IR, and MS) of the disulfonyl bromide derivatives BrSO2 (CF2 )4 SO2 Br, BrSO2 (CF2 )6 SO2 Br, and BrSO2 (CF2 )8 SO2 Br has also been obtained as well as some preliminary spectroscopic evidence for BrSO2 (CF2 )2 SO2 Br and BrSO2 CF2 O(CF2 )2 OCF2 SO2 Br. The implication of these results toward the preparation of the corresponding disulfonyl iodides is discussed.

Keywords: Crystal growth; Halogen bonding; Isosurface plots; Noncovalent interactions; Sulfonyl bromides.