A carbon–carbon double bond consists of a σ bond and a π bond. Recently, the concept of a π single bond, where a π bond is not accompanied by a σ bond, has been proposed in diradicals containing carbon and heteroatom radical centers. Here we report a closed-shell compound having a silicon–silicon π single bond. 1,2,2,3,4,4-Hexa- tert-butylbicyclo[1.1.0]tetrasilane has a silicon−silicon π single bond between the bridgehead silicon atoms. The X-ray crystallographic analysis shows that the silicon−silicon π single bond (2.853(1) Å) is far longer than the longest silicon−silicon bond so far reported. In spite of this unusually long bond length, the electrons of the 3p orbitals are paired, which is confirmed by measurement of electron paramagnetic resonance, and magnetic susceptibility and natural bond orbital analysis. The properties of the silicon−silicon π single bond are studied by UV/Vis and 29Si NMR spectroscopy, and theoretical calculations.
Examples of π single bonds in diradicals are rare, as they are typically unstable. Here, the authors describe a room temperature-stable closed-shell bicyclic tetrasilane that features a Si-Si π single bond between two of the non-adjacent Si centers.