Technical note: Estimating aqueous solubilities and activity coefficients of mono- And α,ω-dicarboxylic acids using COSMOtherm

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  • Noora Hyttinen, University of Oulu, University of Helsinki
  • ,
  • Reyhaneh Heshmatnezhad, University of Oulu
  • ,
  • Jonas Elm
  • Theo Kurtén, University of Helsinki
  • ,
  • Nønne L. Prisle, University of Oulu

We have used the COSMOtherm program to estimate activity coefficients and solubilities of mono- and -dicarboxylic acids and water in binary acid-water systems. The deviation from ideality was found to be larger in the systems containing larger acids than in the systems containing smaller acids. COnductor-like Screening MOdel for Real Solvents (COSMO-RS) underestimates experimental monocarboxylic acid activity coefficients by less than a factor of 2, but experimental water activity coefficients are underestimated more especially at high acid mole fractions. We found a better agreement between COSMOthermestimated and experimental activity coefficients of monocarboxylic acids when the water clustering with a carboxylic acid and itself was taken into account using the dimerization, aggregation, and reaction extension (COSMO-RS-DARE) of COSMOtherm. COSMO-RS-DARE is not fully predictive, but fit parameters found here for water-water and acid-water clustering interactions can be used to estimate thermodynamic properties of monocarboxylic acids in other aqueous solvents, such as salt solutions. For the dicarboxylic acids, COSMO-RS is sufficient for predicting aqueous solubility and activity coefficients, and no fitting to experimental values is needed. This is highly beneficial for applications to atmospheric systems, as these data are typically not available for a wide range of mixing states realized in the atmosphere, due to a lack of either feasibility of the experiments or sample availability. Based on effective equilibrium constants of different clustering reactions in the binary solutions, acid dimer formation is more dominant in systems containing larger dicarboxylic acids (C5-C8), while for monocarboxylic acids (C1-C6) and smaller dicarboxylic acids (C2-C4), hydrate formation is more favorable, especially in dilute solutions.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAtmospheric Chemistry and Physics
Pages (from-to)13131-13143
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020

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