Conformer Separation of Dibenzo-Crown-Ether Complexes with Na+and K+Ions Studied by Cryogenic Ion Mobility-Mass Spectrometry

Keijiro Ohshimo, Xi He, Ryosuke Ito, Fuminori Misaizu

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7 Citations (Scopus)


We performed cryogenic ion mobility-mass spectrometry (IM-MS) to study conformations of dibenzo-crown-ether complexes with Na+ and K+ ions at 86 K in the gas phase. Four dibenzo-crown-ethers (dibenzo-18-crown-6, dibenzo-21-crown-7, dibenzo-24-crown-8, and dibenzo-30-crown-10) with different cavity ring sizes were investigated. For dibenzo-18-crown-6 complexes with Na+ and K+, only one type of conformer was assigned by comparing the experimental collision cross sections with those predicted theoretically for candidate structures. In this conformer, the distance between two benzene rings in the complexes was long due to the open form of the dibenzo-18-crown-6. This open conformer was consistent with the previous laser spectroscopic studies of the cold complex ions in the gas phase. For dibenzo-21-crown-7 and dibenzo-24-crown-8 complexes with Na+ and K+, two types of conformers were clearly separated by IM-MS. These two conformer types were assigned to "open"and "closed"forms in which benzene-benzene distances were long and short, respectively. Observed relative abundances of the open and closed conformers qualitatively agreed with the Boltzmann distribution using Gibbs energies of the conformers calculated by quantum chemical calculations. For the Na+(dibenzo-30-crown-10) complex, open and closed conformers were also observed in IM-MS. On the other hand, only the closed conformer was observed for the K+(dibenzo-30-crown-10) complex. This closed conformer was similar to the "wraparound"structure, which was proposed in the previous studies in the solution. In conclusion, the closed conformers were formed by the deformation of flexible crown ethers with large cavity ring sizes. In addition, the diameter of the K+ ion was suitable to form the closed conformer by deformation of the molecular structure of dibenzo-30-crown-10.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3718-3725
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry A
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 2021 May 6


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