283837 One Pot Synthesis of Hydroxy Methy Furfural From Cellulose in Organic Electrolyte Solution Systems

Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Hall B (Convention Center )
Siamak Alipour, Sridhar Viamajala and Sasidhar Varanasi, Chemical & Environmental Engineering, University of Toledo, Toledo, OH

5-hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) serves as an important platform chemical in the production of fuels and chemicals from biomass.  Its production from cellulose in an ionic liquid (EMIMCl) medium (in presence of CrCl2 and CuCl2 Lewis acid catalysts) has been investigated. An appeal of Ionic liquids for this reaction is that they permit facile reaction conditions (moderate temperatures and pressures), unlike aqueous systems which require extremely demanding operating conditions. However, the observed HMF yields in the above system were not high. The limited solubility of cellulose in EMIMCl, the high viscosity of the reaction medium, and loss of HMF due to undesirable side-reactions were some of the factors that adversely affected HMF yield in the system. Recently, certain organic electrolyte solutions (OES - solution of IL an organic solvent) were shown to dissolve large quantities of cellulose. In addition, unlike neat ILs, organic electrolyte solutions have a much lower viscosity. These features can potentially render OES superior reaction media compared to neat ILs. In this paper, we present the results of our experiments on one pot synthesis of HMF, from concentrated cellulose solutions, in OES media. This presentation would also explore the feasibility of in situ extraction of HMF from the OES into an immiscible solvent to increase HMF yield.  We will also address the possibilty of recycling OES. An additional advantage of OES is the lower cost of this medium compared to neat IL media.

Extended Abstract: File Not Uploaded