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Cover from Professor Odom's Lab Honored by Chemical Science

Cover of Chemical Science chosen from Professor Odom's Lab

Rashmi Jena from Prof. Odom’s group prepared cover art for the journal Chemical Science. The recent article from the Odom, Demir, and McCracken groups on “A rare isocyanide derived from an unprecedented neutral Yttrium(II) bis(amide) complex” in now in print. In this work, the Odom group isolated the first neutral yttrium(II) complex, isostructural to previously reported U(NHAr*)2. To stabilize this divalent state, the ligand uses π-aromatic coordination that electronically and sterically stabilizes the metal center. It is noteworthy that Y(II) reacts with tBuNC as a radical donor, resulting in the formation of an unusual yttrium isocyanide complex, CNY(NHAr*)2. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first structurally characterized transition metal isocyanide complex.

This image depicts all the important aspect of the manuscript:

  • The TV displays a structure of low valent yttrium(II) complex as a breaking news on OmC news channel (OmC = organometallics).
  • The wall has a painting that shows the electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) of a metal radical, while a floor rug with CV design adds an elegant touch.
  • The flower vase features d-orbital shaped flowers with "d1" written on the box.
  • Two starting materials, trimethylacetonitrile and t-butyl isocyanide, are lying on the wooden rack below the TV, and they react with the molecule on the TV to give Yttrium isocyanide. The final product is neatly arranged on a coffee table in the form of a jigsaw puzzle.
  • Several books on organometallic chemistry are lying around, and the clock shows temperature of 25 degrees Celsius at which the molecule is stable. A coffee mug with the initials of the artist/Rashmi
    Professor Aaron Odom (left) and group member Rashmi Jena (right)
    and a cute cat lounging in the room add a homey vibe.

This cover art is inspired by Rashmi’s living room, and she would like to thank her friends Saroshan and Ernesto for helping her in this creative journey.


This work was done in collaboration with Florian Benner, Tj Delano, Dr. Daniel Holmes, Professor John McCracken and Professor Selvan Demir.

Read the article here:  https://pubs.rsc.org/en/content/articlelanding/2023/sc/d3sc00171g