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Triethanolamine/KI: A Multifunctional Catalyst for CO2 Activation and Conversion with Epoxides into Cyclic Carbonates

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A catalytic system of triethanolamine/potassium iodide (KI) was proved to be efficient for the chemical fixation of CO2 with epoxide. It was found that triethanolamine with dual function could activate both CO2 and epoxides. Effects of parameters such as catalyst molar ratio and amount, reaction time, pressure, and temperature were studied systematically. As a result, 99% propylene oxide conversion as well as 99% propylene carbonate selectivity could be obtained under the optimal reaction condition. Furthermore, the catalyst was found to be applicable to a variety of terminal epoxides, providing the corresponding cyclic carbonates in good yields and selectivity. Moreover, the catalyst could be reused five times without loss of activity. This work presents an example of a cheap and efficient catalyst for the chemical fixation of CO2 to high-value chemicals, which could help to improve the catalytic efficiency and decrease cost of products for larger applications.

[Supplementary materials are available for this article. Go to the publisher's online edition of Synthetic Communications® for the following free supplemental resource: Full experimental and spectral details.]
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Keywords: Carbon dioxide; KI; chemical fixation; cyclic carbonates; triethanolamine

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Liaoning Normal University, Dalian, China 2: Beijing Key Laboratory of Ionic Liquids Clean Process, Key Laboratory of Green Process and Engineering, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China

Publication date: 2013-11-17

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