Functionalized phosphonium-based ionic liquids as efficient catalysts for the synthesis of cyclic carbonate from expoxides and carbon dioxide

Wei Li Dai, Bi Jin, Sheng Lian Luo*, Xu Biao Luo, Xin Man Tu, Chak Tong AU

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A series of novel functionalized phosphonium-based ionic liquids (FPBILs) were synthesized by a simple method, and first evaluated as catalysts for the synthesis of cyclic carbonates through the cycloaddition of CO2 to epoxides in the absence of co-catalyst and solvent. The FPBILs perform well in the cycloaddition reaction, especially the carboxyl-functionalized one. Over [Ph3PC2H4COOH]Br, the yield of propylene carbonate is 97.3% (TOF = 64.9 h-1) at 130 C and 2.5 MPa in 3 h. The synergistic effects of polarization induced by hydrogen bonding and nucleophilic attack of Br-anion account for the excellent performance. Furthermore, the FPBILs with moderate methylene chain length show superior catalytic activity. It is because they have both strong acidity and weak electrostatic interaction between phosphonium cation and halide anion. The strong acidity facilitates the ring-opening of epoxyl, and the weak electrostatic interaction enhances the nucleophilic attack capability of Br -. It is envisaged that the metal- and solvent-free process has high potential for the catalytic conversion of CO2 into value-added chemicals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)183-188
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Catalysis A: General
Volume470
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Catalysis
  • Process Chemistry and Technology

User-Defined Keywords

  • Carbon dioxide fixation
  • Cyclic carbonate
  • Cycloaddition reaction
  • Phosphonium-based ionic liquid

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