Hydride ion, as I know is a pretty powerful base, much stronger than hydroxide ion and cannot exist in an aqueous phase.

Can it act as a ligand in coordination compounds? Hydride ion has its electronic configuration as $\mathrm{1s^2}$ in a symmetrical s orbital so the tendency to donate a lone pair into a metal atom would be less. But can its high nucleophilicity allow it to bind to the metal atom despite the symmetry of its orbital?


Yes, there are many examples. For instance

A quick google also shows up http://www.ilpi.com/organomet/hydride.html

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    $\begingroup$ Are these coordination compounds? I thought in LiAlH4 and others, the hydrogen was covalently bonded with the metal atom. Is it a dative bond that exists between them? $\endgroup$ – Pritt Balagopal Apr 20 '17 at 7:47
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    $\begingroup$ Does the model of the bonding matter? In $\ce{MnF6^{2-}}$ the best model is probably ionic while in $\ce{PtI6^{2-}}$ covalent is probably nearer to the truth, and then you have $\ce{{Cu(NH3)_4}^{2+}}$ where some kind of dative bond is the most intuitive model. But I think we'd all be happy to call them metal complexes, which are examples of coordination compounds. $\endgroup$ – Ian Bush Apr 20 '17 at 8:07
  • $\begingroup$ I guess thats true $\endgroup$ – Pritt Balagopal Apr 20 '17 at 8:46
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    $\begingroup$ There’s also the nice case of pentacarbonyl iron which, when hydroxide ions are added, reacts to give $\ce{[Fe(CO)4(COOH)]-}$ which then rearranges and liberates $\ce{CO2}$ to give $\ce{[FeH(CO)4]-}$. This compound is Brønsted amphotheric: it can be protonated to give neutral $\ce{[FeH2(CO4)]}$ or deprotonated to give $\ce{[Fe(CO)4]^2-}$. I think it’s fascinating! $\endgroup$ – Jan Jun 18 '17 at 17:25

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