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Langmuir. 2008 Nov 18;24(22):12785-92. doi: 10.1021/la802320s. Epub 2008 Oct 21.

Effects of addition of polar organic solvents on micellization.

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  • 1Departamento de Qimica Fisica, Universidad de Sevilla, C/ Professor Garcia Gonzalez 1, Sevilla, Spain.


Micellization of several surfactants in water-organic solvent mixtures has been investigated. Only solvents localized mainly in the bulk phase of the micellar solutions (they do not incorporate into the micelles) were studied, with either higher or lower permittivity than that of pure water. Results show that the influence of organic solvent addition on the aggregation process can be approximately accounted for by considering the changes in the bulk phase cohesive energy density, described by the Gordon parameter, G. To our knowledge, this is the first time that, for a given surfactant, the Gibbs energies of micellization, Delta G M degrees , obtained in several water-organic solvent mixtures have been fitted together. It is worth noting that data from different research groups have been considered. The Delta G M degrees versus G correlation will permit the estimation of the variations in the Gibbs energy of micellization upon addition of known quantities of a given polar organic solvent. Speaking in a general way, organic solvent addition results in the bulk phase becoming a better solvent for the surfactant molecules. This would make the hydrophobic tail transfer from the bulk phase into the micelles less favorable and, as a consequence, Delta G M degrees increases (becomes less negative), making the aggregation process less spontaneous.

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