Thermodynamic investigations of methyl tert-butyl ether and water mixtures

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  • Troels Bach Nielsen
  • ,
  • Søren Hvidt
  • ,
  • Søren Rud Keiding
  • Christian Petersen, Denmark
  • Peter Westh
  • ,
  • Jens Kristian Keiding
  • Department of Chemistry
  • Interdisciplinary Nanoscience Center
Interactions between methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE) and water have been investigated by scanning calorimetry, isothermal titration calorimetry, densitometry, IR-spectroscopy, and gas chromatography. The solubilization of MTBE in water at 25 °C at infinite dilution has ΔH° = -17.0 ± 0.6 kJ mol(-1); ΔS° = -80 ± 2 J mol(-1) K(-1); ΔC(p) = +332 ± 15 J mol(-1) K(-1); ΔV° = -18 ± 2 cm(3) mol(-1). The signs of these thermodynamic functions are consistent with hydrophobic interactions. The occurrence of hydrophobic interaction is further substantiated as IR absorption spectra of MTBE-water mixtures show that MTBE strengthens the hydrogen bond network of water. Solubilization of MTBE in water is exothermic whereas solubilization of water in MTBE is endothermic with ΔH° = +5.3 ± 0.6 kJ mol(-1). The negative mixing volume is explained by a large negative contribution due to size differences between water and MTBE and by a positive contribution due to changes in the water structure around MTBE. Henry's law constants, K(H), were determined from vapor pressure measurements of mixtures equilibrated at different temperatures. A van't Hoff analysis of K(H) gave ΔH(H)° = 50 ± 1 kJ mol(-1) and ΔS(H)° = 166 ± 5 J mol(-1) K(-1) for the solution to gas transfer. MTBE is excluded from the ice phase water upon freezing MTBE-water mixtures.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPhysical Chemistry Chemical Physics
Pages (from-to)1182-1188
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jan 2011

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