Module code: CHEM026

Module provider


Module Leader

AMODIO C Dr (Chemistry)

Number of Credits


ECT Credits



FHEQ Level 7

JACs code


Module cap (Maximum number of students)


Module Availability

Semester 1

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 116

Lecture Hours: 30

Tutorial Hours: 4

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework COURSEWORK 30%
Examination EXAM 2 HOURS 70%

Alternative Assessment


Prerequisites / Co-requisites

A knowledge of Inorganic Chemistry to FHEQ Level 5 and 6.

Module overview

Further develops understanding of inorganic chemistry and allows for a topic based and analytical approach to selected aspects of inorganic chemistry within in an applied context.

Module aims

To introduce students to advanced aspects of transition metal organometallic chemistry.

To enable an understanding and appreciation of the fundamental structures, reactivity patterns and spectroscopy associated with organometallic chemistry.

To illustrate the reactivity of selected organometallic complexes and show how these may be used as a tool for the synthesis of complex molecules.

To consider the chemistry of the lanthanoid elements.

To introduce inorganic molecular and polymeric compounds describable as rings, chains and cages.

To introduce modern developments in advanced bioinorganic chemistry

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
Confidently explain bonding systems of simple molecules using molecular orbital theory
Describe the properties of 4f and elements, with particular emphasis on the nature of the f orbitals, and differences with chemistry of the d block metals
Describe the structures of organometallic compounds containing a wide variety of ligand types
Describe qualitatively the nature of the metal to ligand bond in transition metal organometallic compounds generally and provide evidence for the proposed models
Analyze in detail the role of organometallic compounds in the catalytic synthesis of important organic compounds
Describe the application of stoichiometric transition metal complexes in synthesis
Understand the modified reactivity of unsaturated ligands when coordinated to transition metal centres
Give an account of inorganic molecular and polymeric compounds describable as rings, chains and cages
Show an understanding of advanced bioinorganic chemistry
Apply appropriate critical, original, analytical and cognitive skills in solving problems
Evaluate critical aspects of current research in inorganic chemistry, and be aware of different methodologies.

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Module content

Indicative content includes:

Occurrence and structures of transition metal binary carbonyl compounds. The 18-electron rule and variants. Relationship to the MO approach. Modes of coordination of the carbonyl ligand. Phosphine complexes, cone angle. Evidence for p back bonding

Complexes of monodentate alkenes and alkynes: synthesis, structure and bonding. Hapticity.

Allyl and butadiene complexes: synthesis, structure and bonding.

Complexes of cyclo-pentadienyl, benzene and related ligands; synthesis, structure and bonding.

Metal complexes as homogeneous catalysts. Choice of catalyst. Industrial applications: Discussion of a selection of processes taken from:

Alkene hydrogenation, oxidation, hydroformylation; Tennessee-Eastman acetic anhydride process; The Fischer-Tropsch and the Monsanto processes.

The chemistry of the lanthanoid elements. The lanthanide contraction. Occurrence and extractions. Prevalence of the +3 oxidation state in compounds, and exceptions to that. Comparisons and contrasts to transition metals in optical and magnetic properties of compounds, and in complex formation. Organometallic chemistry.

Inorganic rings, chains and cages: siloxanes, phosphorus-nitrogen and sulphur-nitrogen compounds. Metal-metal bonded compounds and clusters. The Wade-Mingos –Lauher rules.

Developments in Bioinorganic chemistry. structure and function of some transition metal complexes important in biology. Oxygen carriers: haemoglobin, myoglobin, haemerythrin, haemocyanine. Electron transfer proteins: cytochromes, Fe-S proteins, copper-blue proteins. Enzymes: nitrogenase, vitamin B12, cytochrome P-450, carboxypeptidase, carbonic anhydrase.


Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

allow students to:

rationalise the properties of 4f elements; evaluate and discuss evidence for the metal-to-ligand bonding in ; organometallic compounds; analyse the role of organometallic compounds in catalysis; critically understand the structure, bonding and reactivity of selected inorganic ring, chain and cage compounds and bioinorganic complexes; critically review aspects of current research related to these areas of inorganic chemistry; be able to apply appropriate critical, original, analytical and cognitive skills in related problem solving.

The learning and teaching methods include:

lectures 30 hours

tutorials 3 hours

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate achievement of learning outcomes.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

·         Examination: one 2-hour unseen written examination (Week 14, 70%) [LOs assessed 1-5]

·         Problem sheet: equivalent to 1000 words (Week 6, 20%) [LOs assessed 1-5]

·         Mid-semester test: short answer questions, 1 hour  (Week 9, 10%) [LOs assessed 1-5]


Formative assessment and feedback

Formative assessment and feedback are provided throughout the module in the form of in-class exercises, examples and worked problems as appropriate. Feedback is instant as model answers (full worked solutions) are given in class. Formative assessment is also evident through the provision of ‘checklists’ at the end of each section of the module that detail the areas covered in that part of the course.

Detailed and individualised feedback is given on the marked assignments within the time allowed for marking coursework.

Reading list


Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2017/8 academic year.