Characterization of reactive organometallic species via MicroED

Here we apply microcrystal electron diffraction (MicroED) to the structural determination of transition metal complexes. We find that the simultaneous use of 300 keV electrons, very low electron doses, and an ultra-sensitive camera allows for the collection of data without cryogenic cooling of the stage. This technique reveals the first crystal structures of the classic zirconocene hydride, colloquially known as “Schwartz’s reagent”, a novel Pd(II) complex not amenable to solution-state NMR or X-ray crystallography, and five other paramagnetic or diamagnetic transition metal complexes.