The kinetics of Ru(III) catalysed and uncatalysed oxidation of DL-alanine by N-bromosuccinimide (NBS) was studied in aqueous acetic acid and in the presence of perchloric acid and Hg (II). In both Ru(III) catalysed and uncatalysed oxidations, the kinetic orders were: first order in NBS, fractional order in substrate. The rate of the reaction decreased with the increase in perchloric acid concentration and addition of halide ions. The reactions were of fractional order with respect to Ru (III). Addition of Os(VIII) had no effect on the rate of oxidation of DL-alanine by NBS. The presence of catalysis with Ru (III) and the absence of catalysis with Os(VIII) in NBS oxidations was traced to different factors. A factor other than complexation could be a more powerful oxidant species like Ru (V) which accelerates the NBS oxidations. The effect of temperature was also investigated. By varying the solvent composition it was found that the reaction rate decreased with the decrease in dielectric constant of the solvent. All kinetic features were explained by postulating suitable mechanisms and rate laws.
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