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3-Methyl-3-silatetrahydropyran 1 was synthesized and its molecular structure and conformational behavior was studied by gas-phase electron diffraction (GED), FTIR, low temperature H-1 and C-13 NMR spectroscopy, and by theoretical calculations (DFT, MP2). Two conformers; 1-ax and 1-eq; were located on the potential energy Surface. In the gas phase; a slight predominance of the axial conformer was determined, with the ratio 1-ax:1-eq = 54(9):46(9) (from GED) or 53:47 or 61;39 (from IR). In solution, LT NMR spectroscopy at 103 K gives the ratio 1-ax:1-eq = 35:65 (-Delta G(103)degrees = 0.13 kcal/mol). Simulation of solvent effects using the PCM continuum model or by calculation of the corresponding solvent-solute complexes allowed us to rationalize the experimentally observed opposite conformational predominance of the conformers of 3-methyl-3-silatettahydropyran in the gas phase and in solution. Comparative analysis of the effect of heteroatom in 1-hetero-3-methyl-3-silacyclohexanes on the structure, stereoelectronic interactions, and relative energies of the conformers is done.

The molecular structure and conformational behavior of 3-methyl-3-phenyl-3-silatetrahydropyran 1 was studied by gas-phase electron diffraction (GED-MS), low temperature C-13 NMR spectroscopy (LT NMR) and theoretical calculations. The 1-Ph-eq and 1-Ph-ax conformers were located on the potential energy surface. Rotation about the Si-C-ph bond revealed the phenyl ring orthogonal to the averaged plane of the silatetrahydropyran ring for 1-Ph-eq and a twisted orientation for 1-Ph-ax. Theoretical calculations and GED analysis indicate the predominance of 1-Ph-ax in the gas phase with the ratio of conformers (GED) 1-Ph-eq:1-Ph-ax=38:62 (Delta G degrees(307)=-0.29 kcal/mol). In solution, LT NMR spectroscopy gives almost the opposite ratio Ph-eq:1-Ph-ax=68:32 (Delta G degrees(103)=0.16 kcal/mol). Simulation of solvent effects using the PCM continuum model or by calculation of the solvent-solute complexes allowed us to rationalize the experimentally observed opposite conformational predominance of the conformers of compound 1 in the gas phase and in solution. (C) 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.