# Reaction of Grignard reagent with ammonia

What is the exact reaction mechanism of the reaction of Grignard reagent with ammonia?

$$\ce{RMgX + NH_3 -> RH + MgNH3X}$$

[I found the above equation from a book, and I am not completely sure that that reaction actually happens]

• Why do you think the reaction might not be taking place? – Eashaan Godbole Nov 11 '16 at 8:32
• @EashaanGodbole Because I took it from an unreliable book. – Shoubhik Raj Maiti Nov 13 '16 at 15:03
• Oh...what I meant to ask was what you think is the chemical/physical reason why such an interaction doesn't take place. – Eashaan Godbole Nov 13 '16 at 15:34

$$\ce{RMgX +NH3 -> RH +MgNH2X}$$
This is a simple proton transfer. $\ce{MgX+}$ is a spectator ion, so the reaction equation could also be written: $$\ce{R- +NH3 -> RH +NH2-}$$
• I'd be hesitant to say that $\ce{MgX+}$ is a spectator ion. It is effectively that way, but the M-C bond is actually pretty covalent. – orthocresol Nov 11 '16 at 14:57