An electrochemical process to prepare and recycle biobased ionic liquids†
This manuscript describes the first electrosynthesis of biobased ionic liquids from L-valine, oxalic acid and glyoxal, which is energy-efficient, does not emit toxic waste and avoids the formation of inorganic waste. These ionic liquids were then used in the development of our electro-recycling process. While their recycling yields are still moderated due to recombination and disproportionation reactions, this unprecedented recycling technology is very promising in terms of environmental and economic gains. Indeed, it has a high energy efficiency, requires low cost equipment, allows a strong decrease of the price of such ionic solvents, limits the use of non-renewable resources and solves the end-of-life problem of dirty biobased ionic liquids.