s-block metals have low electronegativities, which makes them extremely susceptible to oxidation. Isolating these elements in their zero oxidation state is therefore an intimidating synthetic challenge. Here, Sjoerd Harder and colleagues report the first example of a Mg(0)-containing organometallic complex. The compound comprises a linear triatomic Mg–Mg–Mg core, stabilized by β-diketiminate ligands, with the central atom assigned a zero oxidation state. In addition to its remarkable structure, the strongly reducing nature of the compound promises a rich chemistry that demands further exploration.
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