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Lithium tert-butoxide is the metalloorganic compound with the formula LiOC(CH3)3. A white solid, it is used as a strong base in organic synthesis. The compound is often depicted as a salt, and it often behaves as such, but it is not ionized in solution. Both octameric and hexameric forms have been characterized by X-ray crystallography
Structure of the Li6O6C6 core of LiOBu-t hexamer, as determined by X-ray crystallography.
Lithium tert-butoxide is commercially available as a solution and as a solid, but it is often generated in situ for laboratory use because samples are so sensitive and older samples are often of poor quality. It can be obtained by treating tert-butanol with butyl lithium.
As a strong base, lithium tert-butoxide is easily protonated.
^Allan, John F.; Nassar, Roger; Specht, Elizabeth; Beatty, Alicia; Calin, Nathalie; Henderson, Kenneth W. (2004). "Characterization of a Kinetically Stable, Highly Ordered, Octameric Form of Lithiumtert-Butoxide and Its Implications Regarding Aggregate Formation". Journal of the American Chemical Society. 126 (2): 484-485. doi:10.1021/ja038420m. PMID14719943.
^Crowther, G. P.; Kaiser, E. M.; Woodruff, R. A.; Hauser, C. R. (1971). "Esterification Of Hindered Alcohols: tert-Butyl p-Toluate". Organic Syntheses. 51: 96. doi:10.15227/orgsyn.051.0096.