Autocatalytic oxidation of ethers with sodium bromate

Leonid Metsger, Shmuel Bittner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Scopus citations


Sodium and potassium bromate are stable and easily stored oxidants. They can oxidize both open and cyclic ethers in aqueous solution at room temperature yielding esters and lactones. Kinetic studies of the oxidation of tetrahydrofuran to γ-butyrolactone indicate that the major active oxidation species is bromine and not bromate. The bromate is only a supporting agent, responsible for the initiation step and supplying bromine molecules by oxidizing bromide ions during the propagation step. In the oxidation of tetrahydrofuran, high yields of γ-butyrolactone were obtained. (C) 2000 Elsevier Science Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1905-1910
Number of pages6
Issue number13
StatePublished - 24 Mar 2000


  • Bromine
  • Esters
  • Lactones
  • Oxidation of ethers
  • Sodium bromate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Drug Discovery
  • Organic Chemistry


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