Structural Study of the Thermal and Photochemical Spin States in the Spin Crossover Complex [Fe(phen)2(NCSe)2]

Elizabeth J. MacLean, Catherine Mary McGrath, Charles J. O'Connor, Claudio Sangregorio, Jon M W Seddon, Ekk Sinn, Frank E. Sowrey, Simon J. Teat, Ann E. Terry, Gavin B M Vaughan, Nigel A. Young*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


The first structural data for [Fe(phen)2(NCSe)2] (obtained using the extraction method of sample preparation) in its high-spin, low-spin and LIESST induced metastable high-spin states have been recorded using synchrotron radiation single crystal diffraction. The space group for all of the spin states was found to be Pbcn. On cooling from the high-spin state (HS-1) at 292 K through the spin crossover at about 235 K to the low-spin state at 100 K (LS-1) the iron coordination environment changed to a more regular octahedral geometry and the Fe-N bond lengths decreased by 0.216 and 0.196 Å (Fe-N(phen)) and 0.147 Å (Fe-N(CSe)). When the low-spin state was illuminated with visible light at about 26 K, the structure of this LIESST induced metastable high-spin state (HS-2 was very similar to that of HS-1 with regards to the Fe-phen bond lengths, but there were some differences in the bond lengths in the Fe-NCSe unit between HS-1 and HS-2. When HS-2 was warmed in the dark to 50 K, the resultant low-spin state (LS-2) had an essentially identical structure to LS-1. In all spin states, all of the shortest intermolecular contacts (in terms of van der Waals radii) involved the NCSe ligand, which may be important in describing the cooperativity in the solid state. The quality of the samples was confirmed by magnetic susceptibility and IR measurements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5314-5322
Number of pages9
JournalChemistry: A European Journal
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - 7 Nov 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • 1, 10-penanthroline
  • Iron
  • Spin crossover
  • X-ray crystallography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry


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