Carbon and carbon composites obtained using deep eutectic solvents and aqueous dilutions thereof
The aim of this featured article is to illustrate some of the most recent applications of deep eutectic solvents (DESs) in the synthesis of carbon and carbon composites. DESs can be obtained by the complexation of quaternary ammonium salts with hydrogen-bond donors. DESs have typically been referred to as a related class of ionic liquids because they share many properties. However, DESs present the advantage of easier and low-cost preparation. Moreover, their compositional flexibility can eventually be translated into materials that provide advanced functionalities and/or tailored hierarchical structures. Interestingly, the use of the liquid binary mixtures of DESs and H2O for the preparation of carbon materials plays a critical role with regard to the achievement of some particular porous morphologies. Herein, we will also summarize some recent studies performed on DES/H2O liquid binary mixtures, revealing the possibility of obtaining new eutectic mixtures upon the simple addition of water to DESs while keeping the DES contents at a certain pseudo-concentrated range. This finding will pave the way to novel applications, especially in those fields in which the preparation of high-tech products via low-cost processes is critical. We hope that this featured article will encourage scientists to explore the promising perspectives offered by DESs and aqueous dilutions thereof.