We have successfully developed a novel environmentally friendly electrolytic system using recyclable solid-supported bases for in situ generation of a supporting electrolyte from methanol as a solvent. It was found that solid-supported bases are electrochemically inactive at an electrode surface. It was also found that solid-supported bases dissociate methanol into methoxide anions and protons. Therefore, in the presence of solid-supported bases, it was clarified that methanol serves as both a solvent and a supporting electrolyte generated in situ. Anodic methoxylation of various compounds with solid-supported bases was carried out to provide the corresponding methoxylated products in good to excellent yields with a few exceptions. The methoxylated products and the solid-supported bases were easily separated by only filtration, and the desired pure methoxylated products were readily isolated simply by concentration of the filtrates. The separated and recovered solid-supported bases were recyclable for several times.
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