Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 17181279
J Phys Chem B 2006 Dec;110(51):26215-24
In this work the thermal diffusion behavior of binary mixtures of linear alkanes (heptane, nonane, undecane, tridecane, pentadecane, heptadecane) in benzene has been investigated by thermal diffusion forced Rayleigh scattering (TDFRS) for a range of concentrations and temperatures. The Soret coefficient ST of the alkane was found to be negative for these n-alkane/benzene mixtures indicating that the alkanes are enriched in the warmer regions of the liquid mixtures. For the compositions investigated in this work, the magnitude of the Soret coefficient decreases with increasing chain length and increasing alkane content of the mixtures. The temperature dependence of the Soret coefficient depends on mixture composition and alkane chain length; the slope of ST versus temperature changes from positive to negative with increasing chain length at intermediate compositions. To study the influence of molecular architecture on the Soret effect, mixtures of branched alkanes (2-methylhexane, 3-methylhexane, 2,3-dimethylpentane, 2,4-dimethylpentane, 2,2,3-trimethylbutane, and 2,2,4-trimethylpentane) in benzene were also investigated. Our results for the Soret coefficients show that the tendency for the alkanes to move to the warmer regions of the fluid decreases with increasing degree of branching. The branching effect is so strong that for 2,2,4-trimethylpentane/benzene mixtures the Soret coefficient changes sign at high alkane content and that equimolar 2,2,3-trimethylbutane/benzene mixtures have positive Soret coefficients in the investigated temperature range. In order to investigate the effect of molecular interactions on thermal diffusion, we adapted a recently developed two-chamber lattice model to n-alkane/benzene mixtures. The model includes the effects of chain-length, compressibility, and orientation dependence of benzene-benzene interactions and yields good qualitative predictions for the Soret effect in n-alkane/benzene mixtures. For the branched isomers, we find some correlations between the moments of inertia of the molecules and the Soret coefficients. PACS numbers: 66.10.Cb, 61.25.Hq.