Why urea eliminates ammonia rather than hydrolyzes in aqueous solution.


A joint QM/MM and ab initio study on the decomposition of urea in the gas phase and in aqueous solution is reported. Numerous possible mechanisms of intramolecular decomposition and hydrolysis have been explored; intramolecular NH3 elimination assisted by a water molecule is found to have the lowest activation energy. The solvent effects were elucidated… (More)


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