SUMMARY

An investigation into the usefulness of a flash photolytic method of studying redox reactions of the benzyl radical

The Thesis involves a determination of the usefulness of a flash photolytic method of studying redox reactions of the benzyl radical (produced by photolysis of benzyl phenylacetate) with metal ions. Both recombination of benzyl radicals and reactions of the benzyl radical with Cu(II) are investigated. For the recombination reaction, complex kinetics are found, and it is suggested that the benzyl radical is undergoing simultaneous first- and second-order decay. Values of rate constants proposed are

k1 = (0.78 ± 0.06) x 103 s-1
k2/ε = (1.44 ± 0.1) x 105 cm+1s-1

In the presence of the cupric ion, apparently anomalous kinetics are found and a rationalization is proposed on the basis of formation of copper benzyl whose half-life is determined to be approximately 900μs.