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The Sulfur Dioxide−1-Butyl-3-Methylimidazolium Bromide Interaction:  Drastic Changes in Structural and Physical Properties

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journal contribution
posted on 02.08.2007, 00:00 by Rômulo A. Ando, Leonardo J. A. Siqueira, Fernanda C. Bazito, Roberto M. Torresi, Paulo S. Santos
The contact between minor amounts of SO2 and crystalline 1-butyl-3-methyl-imidazolium bromide (BMIBr) causes the almost immediate melting of the ionic liquid (mp 45 °C) as well as a dramatic decrease in its viscosity in comparison to the pure molten phase. The same behavior was observed for other halide ionic liquids of higher melting points (70, 135, and 220 °C). The Raman spectrum of BMIBr−SO2 clearly indicates a specific charge transfer interaction involving SO2 and the halide. The measurements of ionic conductivity and diffusion coefficients obtained for the neat BMIBr (molten phase) and for the BMIBr−SO2 strongly suggest a higher degree of ionic association in the presence of SO2. Molecular dynamic simulations indicate that although the cation−anion distance is preserved in the short range, there is a variation in the interionic distances in the second shell, leading to a less organized structure in the long range. The modulation of the structural and physical properties of ionic liquids by SO2 and the convenient choice of the ions for gas absorption are suggested.