Opendata, web and dolomites


Selective Hydrogenation of Arenes - A Dream Reaction

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






 HyDream project word cloud

Explore the words cloud of the HyDream project. It provides you a very rough idea of what is the project "HyDream" about.

made    reactive    utilising    previously    carbene    hydroformylation    transformations    transformation    constitutes    derivatives    arenes    sought    direct    convert    catalysis    yield    ketones    merged    acknowledged    breakthroughs    life    became    cyclohexanes    first    form    materials    versions    hydrogenation    synthetically    motifs    dream    amount    straightforward    reaction    catalyst    astonishing    uses    mechanistic    oldest    metal    material    leader    donating    substrates    complexity    ideal    perfectly    prizes    olefins    expertise    underexplored    pioneers    paper    sterocentres    enantioselective    nature    multiple    published    sustainable    caused    selective    aromaticity    single    suited    polymers    chiral    envision    desirable    electron    contrast    soluble    arene    heteroatom    deep    barrier    ligands    kinetic    frame    sciences    rapid    world    readily    homogenous    benzene    complexes    2004    syngas    unknown    synthesis    contributions    solutions    functionalised    consequently    area    nobel    substituted    heteroarenes    minimally   

Project "HyDream" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
postcode: 48149
website: n.a.

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Germany [DE]
 Total cost 2˙495˙000 €
 EC max contribution 2˙495˙000 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2017-ADG
 Funding Scheme ERC-ADG
 Starting year 2018
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2018-10-01   to  2023-09-30


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 


 Project objective

The hydrogenation of ketones and olefins is one of the oldest synthetically used transformations. The reaction is highly sustainable and its value has been acknowledged by two Nobel Prizes. In contrast, the hydrogenation of arenes is still underexplored due to the high kinetic barrier caused by aromaticity. However, the selective arene hydrogenation constitutes a dream reaction for use in an ideal synthesis: The transformation is straightforward, uses readily available substrates, and is able to build-up an astonishing amount of complexity, with the potential to form multiple defined sterocentres, in a single step. With our first paper on selective arene hydrogenation published in 2004, we became pioneers in this field and have continuously made important contributions using metal–carbene complexes. As a world-leader in this area and with expertise in several relevant fields of catalysis, we are perfectly suited to convert arene hydrogenation into a reliable and general transformation within the frame of this project. We will provide rapid access to sought-after motifs and consequently will enable breakthroughs in material and life sciences.

Key to our success will be the design of strongly electron-donating carbene ligands and deep mechanistic understanding. Specifically, we will develop solutions for the problematic hydrogenation of heteroatom-substituted arenes, and heteroarenes. Utilising the soluble nature of a homogenous catalyst, we also envision applications in the hydrogenation of polymers, offering direct access to new materials. Furthermore, the use of syngas is expected to allow for the development of a merged hydrogenation-hydroformylation reaction to yield highly functionalised cyclohexanes in a single step from minimally functionalised arenes. Finally, we aim to develop chiral versions of our highly reactive metal–carbene catalyst to enable the previously unknown but highly desirable enantioselective hydrogenation of benzene derivatives.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2019 Zackaria Nairoukh, Marco Wollenburg, Christoph Schlepphorst, Klaus Bergander, Frank Glorius
The formation of all-cis-(multi)fluorinated piperidines by a dearomatization–hydrogenation process
published pages: 264-270, ISSN: 1755-4330, DOI: 10.1038/s41557-018-0197-2
Nature Chemistry 11/3 2020-02-13
2019 Marco Wollenburg, Daniel Moock, Frank Glorius
Hydrogenation of Borylated Arenes
published pages: 6549-6553, ISSN: 1433-7851, DOI: 10.1002/anie.201810714
Angewandte Chemie International Edition 58/20 2020-02-13
2019 Mario P. Wiesenfeldt, Zackaria Nairoukh, Toryn Dalton, Frank Glorius
Selective Arene Hydrogenation for Direct Access to Saturated Carbo- and Heterocycles
published pages: 10460-10476, ISSN: 1433-7851, DOI: 10.1002/anie.201814471
Angewandte Chemie International Edition 58/31 2020-02-13

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