Protic ionic liquids: Preparation, characterization, and proton free energy level representation

Jean Philippe Belieres, Charles Angell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

464 Scopus citations


We give a perspective on the relations between inorganic and organic cation ionic liquids (ILs), including members with melting points that overlap around the borderline 100°C. We then present data on the synthesis and properties (melting, boiling, glass temperatures, etc.) of a large number of an intermediate group of liquids that cover the ground between equimolar molecular mixtures and ILs, depending on the energetics of transfer of a proton from one member of the pair to the other. These proton-transfer ILs have interesting properties, including the ability to serve as electrolytes in solvent-free fuel cell systems. We provide a basis for assessing their relation to aprotic ILs by means of a Gurney-type proton-transfer free energy level diagram, with approximate values of the energy levels based on free energy of formation and pKa data. The energy level scheme allows us to verify the relation between solvent-free acidic and basic electrolytes, and the familiar aqueous variety, and to identify neutral protic electrolytes that are unavailable in the case of aqueous systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4926-4937
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry B
Issue number18
StatePublished - May 10 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry


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