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Beatriz Royo Lab


Our research topics are organometallic chemistry and catalysis as key activities for health and sustainable development.  Our approach to catalysis aims to develop sustainable synthesis of pharmaceuticals and bioactive molecules.

Beatriz Royo
Investigador Coordenador
PhD in 1993, Sussex University

Phone (+351) 214469754 | Extension 1754
Email | Lab website



Research Interests

The development of new catalytic systems that allow for rapid and selective transformations have a significant impact in the chemical industry, in particular in pharmaceutical, agrochemical, and fine chemical industry. In this context, organometallic compounds have become an established synthetic tool for the synthesis of useful molecules.

Our work focus on the development of new catalysts based on abundant and non-toxic metals for the synthesis of small-molecules of biological interest. We aim to develop atom economy processes with high selectivities, that exploit resources more efficiently and minime waste. Our activities are based on fundamental research focused on the synthesis of organometallic molecules and their reactivity studies. We are interested in applying organometallic compounds to catalysis as an approach to sustainable development.

Current areas of research in our group include:

  1. Development of new catalysts based on cheap and abundant metals for reduction and oxidation reactions including hydrogen transfer, and dehydrogenative-  and oxidative- coupling reactions.
  2. Exploit the fascinating properties of N-heterocyclic carbenes as ligands in organometallic chemistry.
  3. Study of metal-catalysed borrowing hydrogen reactions for the synthesis of pharmaceutical relevant intermediates.
  4. Explore new ways of waste valorisation, and better use of raw materials.
  5. Development of catalysis in water, as a key solvent for Green chemistry.


Group Members

  • Rita Lopes, Ph D student
  • Mara Pinto, PhD student
  • Ana Fernandes, PhD student
  • Sofia Friães, BI student
  • Carlos Texeira, PhD student


Selected Publications

  1. Chelating bis-N-heterocyclic carbene complexes of iron(II) containing bipyridyl ligands as catalyst precursors for oxidation of alcohols, M. Pinto, B. Cardoso, S. Barroso, A. M. Martins, B. Royo, Dalton Trans., 2016, 45, 13541.

  2. Direct synthesis of iron(0) N-heterocyclic carbene complexes by using Fe3(CO)12 and their application in reduction of carbonyl groups, S. Warratz, L. Postigo, B. Royo, Organometallics 2013, 32, 893.

  3. N-Heterocyclic carbene complexes of nickel as efficient catalysts for hydrosilylation of carbonyl derivatives, L. Postigo, B. Royo, Adv. Synth. Catal. 2012, 354, 2613.

  4. Unpredecented synthesis of iron NHC complexes by C-H activation of imidazolium salts. Mild catalysts for reduction of sulfoxides, J. M. S. Cardoso, B. Royo, Chem. Commun. 2012, 48, 4944-4946

  5. Iron(II) Complexes Bearing Chelating Cyclopentadienyl N-heterocyclic Carbene Ligands as Catalysts for Hydrosilylation and Hydrogen Transfer Reactions, V.V. Krishna Mohan, J. M. S. Cardoso, E. Peris, B. Royo, Organometallics 2010, 29, 2777.

  6. First Cp*-Functionalized N-Heterocyclic Carbene and Its Coordination to Iridium. Study of the Catalytic Properties, A. P. da Costa, M. Viciano, M. Sanaú, S. Merino, J. Tejeda, E. Peris, B. Royo, Organometallics, 2008, 27, 1305-1309.


Laboratory's website

For further information please visit the laboratory's website


Catálise Organometálica (PT)

O desenvolvimento de novos catalisadores para a síntese de moléculas orgânicas tem um grande impacto na indústria farmacêutica e de química fina. Em particular, os catalisadores organometálicos permitem desenvolver processos muito eficientes e selectivos.

O nosso grupo de investigação trabalha no desenho e síntese de compostos organometálicos baseados em metáis baratos e no tóxicos para sua aplicação como catalisadores.


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