High-speed Ball Milling Enables an Ultra-fast Wittig Olefination Under Ambient and Solvent-free Conditions Without Ylide Pre-formation

17 June 2024, Version 2
This content is a preprint and has not undergone peer review at the time of posting.


30 Seconds to success! – The Wittig reaction, a fundamental and extensively utilized reaction in organic chemistry, enables the efficient conversion of carbonyl compounds to olefins using phosphonium salts. Traditionally, meticulous reaction setup, including the pre-formation of a reactive ylide species via deprotonation of a phosphonium salt, is crucial for achieving high-yielding reactions under classical solution-based conditions. In this report, we present an unprecedented protocol for an ultra-fast mechanochemically driven Wittig reaction under solvent-free and ambient conditions, eliminating the need for tedious ylide pre-formation under strict air and moisture exclusion. A range of aldehydes and ketones were reacted with diverse phosphonium salts under high-speed ball milling conditions, giving access to the respective olefins in only 30 seconds.


Wittig reaction
ball milling

Supplementary materials

Supporting Information for manuscript
Experimental procedures and compound characterization


Comments are not moderated before they are posted, but they can be removed by the site moderators if they are found to be in contravention of our Commenting Policy [opens in a new tab] - please read this policy before you post. Comments should be used for scholarly discussion of the content in question. You can find more information about how to use the commenting feature here [opens in a new tab] .
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy [opens in a new tab] and Terms of Service [opens in a new tab] apply.