The key intramolecular [2 + 2] photochemical cycloaddition step in the synthesis of dimethyl cubane-1,4-dicarboxylate is performed with substoichiometric amounts of the photosensitizer benzophenone. The reaction proceeds via a Dexter energy transfer process between the triplet excited state benzophenone and a well-known cubane precursor diene. The use of the cheap and widely available benzophenone as the photosensitizer enables lower energy light to be used than the traditional photochemical process.
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Benzophenone as a Cheap and Effective Photosensitizer for the Photocatalytic Synthesis of Dimethyl Cubane-1,4-dicarboxylate (dataset)