HOME Research Activities Research factors Research factors search Development of reversible and temperature-driven phase transition of ionic liquid/water mixtures

Development of reversible and temperature-driven phase transition of ionic liquid/water mixtures


Research members: Hiroyuki Ohno PhD.

Research fields: Applied chemistry, Materials chemistry

Departments: Institute of Engineering

Keywords: Ionic liquid,Functional ionic liquid,temperature-driven,phase change,hydration state

Web site:


Ionic liquids (ILs) composed entirely of ions are a kinds of salt with very low melting temperature, negligible vapor pressure, less-flammability, and high ion conductivity. One of research topics is controlling phase behavior of these ILs and water mixture, especially temperature-driven phase control of IL/water mixture. We have designed a lot of ILs and studied phase behavior of these IL/water mixture. The data suggested that some IL/water mixture show lower critical solution temperature (LCST)-type phase transition (Fig. 1), when total hydrophobicity of cation and anion fixed within a certain range(Fig. 2). In the LCST-type phase transition, the homogeneous mixture underwent phase separation upon heating, and the mixture became homogeneous again upon cooling. These phase change could be controlled by small temperature change. By effective utilization of LCST-type phase transition of IL/water mixture, separation of a target protein from their mixtures was successfully carried out using the LCST behaviour of the IL/water mixtures (Fig. 3). In the future,enzymatic reaction will occur in a homogeneous solution, and then product and enzyme will be easily separated by small temperature change (Fig. 4).

Reference articles and patents

1) LCST-type phase changes of a mixture of water and ionic liquids derived from amino acids, K. Fukumoto and H. Ohno, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., 2007, 46, 1852-1855. 2) Extraction of proteins with temperature sensitive and reversible phase change of ionic liquid/water mixture, Y. Kohno, S. Saita, K. Murata, N. Nakamura, and H. Ohno, Polym. Chem., 2011, 2, 862-867. 3) Material design of ionic liquids to show temperature-sensitive LCST-type phase transition after mixing with water, Y. Kohno, H. Arai, S. Saita, and H. Ohno, Australian J. Chem., 2011, 64, 1560-1567. 4) Selective transport of water-soluble proteins from aqueous to ionic liquid phase via a temperature-sensitive phase change of these mixtures, Y. Kohno, N. Nakamura, and H. Ohno, Australian J. Chem., 2012, 65, 1548-1553. 5) Ionic liquids showing phase separation with water prepared by mixing hydrophilic and polar amino acid ionic liquids, S. Saita, Y. Kohno, N. Nakamura, and H. Ohno, Chem. Comm., 2013, 49, 8988-8990.


University Research Administration Center(URAC),
Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology
(Please replace [at] with @.)