Welcome to the Berkefeld Research Group Website

Our main research objective focusses on the structure-reactivity relationship in transition-metal thiolate compounds.

Why thiolate?

We aim at making use of the functional properties of M-S bonds which include:

  1. Covalent M-S bonding: e--transfer along M-S units
  2. Bronsted-basicity of M-S: H+-transfer between sulphur and metal
  3. Redox-activity of M-S structure: formation of mixed-valent radical-ligand structures
    [thiolate-M(n+)-thiyl]+ vs [thiolate-M(n+1)+-thiolate]+
To what effect?
  1. M-S structures are functional units that enable rapid electron transfer in Nature.
  2. Proton transfer between sulphur and the metal provides an efficient mechanism for
    the formation of highly reactive metal-hydride that is the key reactive component in the
    evolution and oxidation of H2 such as in natural [NiFe]-hydrogenase.
  3. Radical-ligand complexes feature intriguing electronic structures and optical properties
    and have a widespread spectrum of applications such as in catalysis or as electrochromic
    near-infrared dyes
Who is on the team?

Dipl.-Chem. Nicole Mews, Dr. Andreas Berkefeld, and Dr. Felix Koch.