Conformational aspects of polymorphs and phases of 2-propyl-1H-benzimidazole

February 4, 2019


Conformational aspects of polymorphs and phases of 2-propyl-1H-benzimidazole


Fco. Javier Zuñiga, Aurora J. Cruz-Cabeza, Xabier M. Aretxabaleta, Noelia de la Pinta, Tomasz Breczewski, María Mar Quesada-Moreno, Juan Ramón Avilés Moreno, Juan Jesús López-González, Rosa M. Claramunt and Jose Elguero






This paper reports on the polymorphism of 2-propyl-1H-benzimidazole (2PrBzIm) induced by temperature change. Upon heating, an irreversible reconstructive-type phase transition at T = 384 K from the ordered form I (P212121) to a new polymorph, form IIHT (Pcam), was observed. The structural transformation between forms I and II involves significant changes in the crystal packing, as well as a key conformational variation around the propyl chain of the molecule. After the first irreversible phase transition, the IIHT form undergoes two further (reversible) phase transitions upon cooling at 361 K (IIRT) and 181 K (IILT). All three phases (forms IIHT, IIRT and IILT) have almost identical crystal packing and, given the reversibility of the conversions as a function of temperature, they are referred to as form II temperature phases. They differ, however, with respect to conformational variations around the propyl chain of 2PrBzIm. Energy calculations of the gas-phase conformational energy landscape of this compound about its flexible bonds allowed us to classify the observed conformational variations of all forms into changes and adjustments of conformers. This reveals that forms I and II are related by conformational change, and that two of the form II phases (HT and RT) are related by conformational adjustment, whilst the other two (RT and LT) are related by conformational change. We introduce the term ‘conformational phases’ for different crystal phases with almost identical packing but showing changes in conformation




Vibrational circular dichroism, molecular crystals, polymorphism, phase transitions, conformational changes, energy minimization.