Sugar it up: Stabilization of the CrCl2 active phase in a thin layer of an ionic liquid covalently grafted to mesoporous silica results in a highly selective catalyst for the dehydration of glucose to 5-hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) in an aqueous medium. Glucose dehydration in water by using the CrCl2-Im-SBA-15 catalyst leads to a 5 % HMF selectivity that can be further increased to up to 7 % by modifying the solvent system.
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