# What is the function of nitrobenzene as a solvent in Friedel Crafts alkylation reaction?

I would like to know what is the function of nitrobenzene as a solvent in Friedel Crafts alkylation reaction.

Answer to this question suggests that Friedel Crafts reaction is not possible with nitrobenzene and I understand that it's because of the big loss of electron density of the benzene ring due to the highly deactivating nature of $\ce{-NO2}$

• Although I agree solubility of the $\ce{AlCl3}$ is good in nitrobenzene (they sell solutions of this), perhaps due to the formation of these complexes, I wouldn't go as far as saying that the complexes are catalytic. The referenced paper cites two references to support this claim, none of which actually say this (one doesn't even use nitrobenzene). If you have another references that shows this catalytic activity, by all means, would be very interesting to read! – ralk912 Mar 20 '18 at 7:17