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Directed discovery of greener cosolvents: new cosolvents for use in ionic liquid based organic electrolyte solutions for cellulose dissolution

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6200-6207
Number of pages8
JournalACS Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering
Volume4
Issue number11
Early online date28 Sep 2016
DOIs
DateAccepted/In press - 28 Sep 2016
DateE-pub ahead of print - 28 Sep 2016
DatePublished (current) - 7 Nov 2016

Abstract

Cellulose is an abundant, cheap, renewable, yet recalcitrant, material, which, if dissolved, may be formed into a wide range of materials, composites, and mixtures. Much attention has recently been focused on the use of mixtures of ionic liquids and some solvents (so-called organic electrolyte solutions, OESs) as efficient cellulose dissolution solvents, but many of the cosolvents used lack green credentials - a perennial problem where dipolar aprotic solvents are the solvents of choice. We present a rational approach, based on definition of ranges of solvent parameters gathered together in recently published databases, to find "greener" cosolvents for OES formation. Thus, γ-butyrolactone is identified as a suitable OES former for dissolution of microcrystalline cellulose and biobased γ-valerolactone as a marginally less efficient, but significantly safer, alternative. Comparison of cosolvent efficiency reveals that previous use of measures of mass, or concentration, of cellulose dissolved may have masked the similarities between 1-methylimidazole, dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO), N,N-dimethylformamide, N-N′-dimethylimidazolidinone, N,N-dimethylacetamide, N-methylpyrrolidinone, and sulfolane (seldom considered), while comparison on a molar basis reveals that the molar volume of the solvent is an important factor. Reference-interaction site model (RISM) calculations for the DMSO/1-ethyl-3-methylimidazolium acetate OES suggest competition between DMSO and the acetate anion and preferential solvation of cellulose by the ionic liquid.

Additional information

Accepted manuscript in publisher's template.

    Research areas

  • 1-Ethyl-3-methylimidazolium acetate, Cellulose, Dissolution, Ionic liquid, Organic electrolyte solutions (OESs), Reference-interaction site model (RISM), γ-Butyrolactone, γ-Valerolactone

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    Rights statement: This is the author accepted manuscript (AAM). The final published version (version of record) is available online via ACS at https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acssuschemeng.6b02020. Please refer to any applicable terms of use of the publisher.

    Accepted author manuscript, 1 MB, PDF document

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