Liquid-Liquid Miscibility for Organic Acids with Methanol

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Liquid miscibility is the measure of how well a pair of liquids mixes/dissolves. The miscibility of two liquids depends on the Gibbs free energy of the system, which is a function of temperature, enthalpy and entropy . The difference in free energy between the mixture and its pure components is given by . In the two-component systems modeled in this Demonstration, increasing or decreasing the mole fraction of one component such that the total number of moles always adds up to 1 changes the enthalpy and entropy of the system. This in turn changes the free energy of the system. This Demonstration assumes constant temperature, and shows two examples: methanol/propionic acid and methanol/acetic acid. When the mole fraction of methanol, which can be manipulated with the slider, gives the lowest , the system is thermodynamically in the most stable state.

Contributed by: Ruchita Iyer and Soundharya Subramaniam (December 2017)
Additional contributions by: Eitan Geva (University of Michigan)
Open content licensed under CC BY-NC-SA


Snapshot 1: the most favorable state of propionic acid and methanol as Gibbs free energy is minimized

Snapshot 2: the mole fraction of methanol is equal to .1; this can be described as a solution of methanol in propionic acid

Snapshot 3: the mole fraction of methanol is equal to .9, and is therefore a solution of propionic acid in methanol


[1] R. Haase and R. Lorenz, "Enthalpies of Mixing for Binary Liquid Mixtures of Monocarbonic Acids and Alcohols," Zeitschrift für Naturforschung A, 40(9), 1985 pp. 947–951.

Submission from the Compute-to-Learn course at the University of Michigan.


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