Extractive Denitrogenation of Fuel Oils with Ionic Liquids: A Systematic Study

Matthew Y. Lui, Lisa Cattelan, Lisa C. Player, Anthony F. Masters, Alvise Perosa, Maurizio Selva, Thomas Maschmeyer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


Ionic liquids (ILs) have been suggested as useful extractants of aromatic nitrogen-containing compounds (N compounds) from fuel oils. In this systematic study, ILs based on common cations and anions are employed as extractants of the archetypical N compounds pyridine and indole from a model oil consisting of decane and toluene. The performance of these ILs as extractants of N compounds is compared and rationalized. It is demonstrated that the cation and anion sizes (offering more surface area for extractants to interact) are the major factors determining the effectiveness of N compound extraction, although hydrogen bond donor/acceptor abilities of ILs can also play a role in the removal of these N compounds. In this study, some ILs are found to dissolve a considerable amount of oil contents. This undesired property can be controlled by the size of IL ions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2183-2189
Number of pages7
JournalEnergy and Fuels
Issue number3
Early online date9 Dec 2016
Publication statusPublished - 16 Mar 2017

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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