Experiment SURFACE TENSION OF LIQUIDS. Experiment 1, page 1 Version of June 17, 2016

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1 Experiment 1, page 1 Version of June 17, 2016 Experiment SURFACE TENSION OF LIQUIDS Theory To create a surface requires work that changes the Gibbs energy, G, of a thermodynamic system. dg = SdT + VdP + γda (1.1) where γ is the surface tension, the free energy per unit surface area, A is the surface area, and the other terms have their common meanings. Because a surface always involves two phases, the surface tension depends on the nature of the two substances between which the surface is formed. If surface segregation of material occurs in a solution, the surface tension of the solution may depend on concentration in complex ways. Like other thermodynamic variables, surface tension depends on conditions such as the temperature. Eq. (1.1), for example, shows that the temperature derivative of γ is given by the following Maxwell equation: γ S = (1.2) T P A T where the derivative on the right is known as the surface entropy. One can evaluate the surface entropy by investigating the manner in which the surface tension varies with temperature. Reports of surface tension are often given for the situation in which the second phase is air or the vapor of the material. For example, at 20 C, the reported surface tension of benzene against air is dyne/cm, whereas the reported surface tension of benzene against its vapor is reported to be dyne/cm, only slightly different. In Table 1.1 are data on the surface tension of water against air. Surface tensions of liquids against liquids are called interfacial tensions. Such interfacial tensions can be very different from the surface tensions of liquids against air. For example, the interfacial tension of water against benzene is 35 dyne/cm at 20 C, whereas the surface tension of water against air is dyne/cm, and that of benzene against air is dyne/cm. Surface tension produces several observable phenomena. The rise of a liquid in a capillary is the result of surface tension. The spreading of a film of oil on water is another example of the effect of surface tension, something first reported by Benjamin Franklin, although it probably was known in antiquity. The beading of raindrops on a freshly waxed car is an effect of surface tension. Consider the situation depicted in Fig. 1.1, in which the end of a capillary tube of radius, r, is immersed in a liquid. For sufficiently small capillaries, one observes a substantial rise of liquid to a height, h, in the capillary, because of the force exerted on the liquid due to surface tension. Equilibrium occurs when the force of gravity on the volume of liquid balances the force due to surface tension. The balance point can be used to measure the surface tension: 2 γ (2π r ) = ρ h ( π r ) g (1.3)

2 Experiment 1, page 2 Version of June 17, 2016 Table 1.1. Density and Surface Tension of Water Against Air at Various Temperatures a Temperature ( C) Density (gm/cm 3 ) γ (dyne/cm) Temperature ( C) Density (gm/cm 3 ) γ (dyne/cm) a Weast, R. C.; Astle, M. J. Eds., CRC Handbook of Physics and Chemistry, 63 rd Edition; CRC Press: Boca Raton, Florida, Figure Schematic diagram showing liquid rise in a capillary of radius r. where r is the radius of the capillary, h is the capillary rise, ρ is the liquid density, g is the acceleration due to gravity 1, and γ is the surface tension of the liquid. Rearrangement gives a simple expression for the surface tension: 1 γ = ρ g r h (1.4) 2 A careful look at the boundary shows that the surface is not perfectly flat. Instead it curves up (or sometimes down for certain materials like mercury) at the wall to form a meniscus, as shown in the inset in Fig The material in this region also contributes to the force of gravity, so one often finds a correction to Eq. (1.4) of the form Figure 1.1. Capillary rise due to surface tension. γ = 1 ρ g r ( h + r ) (1.5) 2 3 where the contact angle (the angle between the surface of the liquid and surface of the glass) has been assumed to be 0. 1 The standard acceleration due to gravity is defined by the International Committee on Weights and Measures to be cm/sec 2. Where exceptional accuracy is required, the acceleration due to gravity (in cm/sec 2 ) at various places on the surface of the Earth can be found from Helmert s equation: g = cos (2φ) cos 2 (2φ) H, where φ is the latitude and H is the elevation above sea level in centimeters.

3 Experiment 1, page 3 Version of June 17, 2016 Procedure In this experiment you determine the surface tension of liquids against air by the method of capillary rise. To get good results, you must pay attention to cleanliness and procedure. If the capillary tube has not been cleaned recently, it should be soaked in hot nitric acid for several minutes, following by washing with deionized water. The capillary should be stored in the polyethylene bottle containing deionized water when not in use. The apparatus is shown in Fig A test tube is fitted with a two-hole stopper. Through one hole is fitted the capillary tube (a length of a thermometer cut to expose the capillary at both ends). This is fitted through a glass sleeve and held in place by a piece of rubber tubing. In the second hole is a tube through which pressure or suction can be applied. This test tube apparatus is immersed in a water bath to allow control of temperature. The water bath should be set at 25 C. The measurement technique Figure 1.2. Schematic of the device for measuring capillary rise. is straightforward. You use a cathetometer 2 to determine the rise above the level of the material in the test tube. Record the height of the liquid in the test tube and then the height of the liquid in the capillary; the difference of these is the capillary rise. Do this measurement at least ten times (and preferably more, maybe even 20 times) on each sample. Each measurement should be made after the system is disturbed and allowed to return to equilibrium. Use the pressure/suction port or the top of the capillary to drive the system away from equilibrium in both directions. You should raise and lower the liquid in the capillary several times (by means of the suction and pressure) before making the first reading to ensure proper coating of the capillary walls. Be certain that the cathetometer is level by checking the bubble on the telescope, and that the hair is set at the level of liquid in the test tube (and at the bottom of the meniscus for reading the height) in the capillary when making readings. Ensure that your eye is always at the same level relative to the cathetometer s telescope, as parallax can add uncertainty to your measurement. Do not allow bubbles to form in the capillary, as this causes a substantial error in the reading of the capillary rise. Your result for each measurement should be an average of at least 10 evaluations for each sample, and preferably more. 2 A cathetometer is a devise for precisely determining height. It consists of a telescope with crosshairs mounted on a graduated bar. By moving the telescope up and down to line the cross hairs with the point to be measured, one can read the height very precisely. Ask the laboratory instructor for instruction in reading the scale and focusing the instrument. It is imperative that you consistently set the cathetometer and read the scale in the same manner.

4 Experiment 1, page 4 Version of June 17, 2016 The measurement, like all measurements, is done relative to some known quantity, in this case the surface tension of water under the conditions. 1. Calibration of the apparatus is done by determining the capillary rise of deionized water. Add enough deionized water to the bottom of the test tube so that the bottom of the capillary can easily be immersed in it; do not have the capillary touch the bottom of the test tube. Install the stopper with the capillary in it and clamp the whole setup so all parts of the apparatus containing water (including the water in the capillary) are immersed in the water bath. The calibration measurements should be done at the beginning, and they do not have to be repeated between measurements of other materials, so long as the same capillary is used and the experiments are done on the same day. To control the temperature, you should open the stopcocks to allow circulation of water from the thermal bath into the cylindrical container that holds the experiment. Open the two stopcocks simultaneously to start the flow. You must adjust the amount of openness of the bottom stopcock to make the water level stable, so watch it carefully. Wait a few minutes to allow everything to come to a constant temperature. Record the temperature of the bath (which should be 25 o C). Be VERY careful with the water flow in the thermostatted bath. If the level rises, it will spill over onto the desk, making a mess for which you will be penalized. Adjust the bottom stopcock to create a steady level. When starting the flow, open BOTH stopcocks simultaneously. When shutting the system down, close BOTH stopcocks simultaneously. You must watch the level at all times to ensure there is no overflow onto the desk. 2. Make measurements of the capillary rise at 25 C for methanol, ethanol, n-propanol, isopropanol, and n-butanol. Allow time for thermal equilibration of before making each set of measurements. When adding a new material, you should rinse the capillary thoroughly several times. Add an aliquot of the material to be measured and pull it into the capillary several times to remove any material from the previous use of the capillary; discard the material in the test tube and add fresh material. Repeat the procedure with at least three aliquots of material before making the first measurement of capillary rise. Rinse again and repeat. The two results should be the same (within some reasonable uncertainly). If not, repeat the rinse until you are confident that the capillary rise is independent of the prior cleaning. You should ultimately take at least 10 measurements that you believe are good. Even more measurements will provide better statistics when you start to analyze the data. 3. After all data are taken, disassemble the apparatus. Clean the test tube. Rinse the capillary with fresh deionized water at least three times and put it back in the deionized water in the bottle. Store all materials in the drawer properly. Close the stopcocks and turn off the thermal bath. Calculations 1. For each material, using your data, calculate the average capillary rise of water at 25 o C. There will be a dispersion of value around the average. If some values, lie outside of 2 times the standard deviation of the set, discard those values and recalculate the average without

5 Experiment 1, page 5 Version of June 17, 2016 those outliers in the set. Check again for outliers of the new set, and repeat this procedure until all points lie within 2 standard deviations of the average; your final set must include at least 8 values. If you have fewer, repeat the measurements. With the final set, determine the average capillary rise of water and its uncertainty at the 95% confidence level. 2. Repeat the procedure in step 1 for the data you gathered on each of the alcohols. For each alcohol, report the average capillary rise, with the uncertainty at the 95% confidence level at 25 o C, in a table that contains all the data (a) Assume the literature value of the surface tension of water is correct. Use the average capillary rise for water (along with its associated uncertainty) from step 1 to determine the effective radius (and its associated uncertainty) of the capillary you used by solving equation (1.4). (b) Use Eq. (1.5) to estimate the radius of the capillary from the capillary rise of water. Does equation (1.5) give a measurably different value from that by using equation (1.4)? Explain the answer. 4. If your results show that Eq. (1.5) gives a measurably different result from Eq. (1.4), use it in the following calculations; otherwise, use Eq. (1.4). Convert the average capillary rise of each alcohol (plus the associated uncertainty), along with the average capillary rise of water (and its uncertainty), and other constants from the literature to derive the surface tension of each alcohol at 25 o C. Report the results in a table. 5. In the table you made in question 4, also report the literature value of the surface tension of each alcohol. Be sure to reference the literature (not the Internet!!) from which you took these data, and use the proper ACS style for references. Table 1.2. Density of Alcohols at Various Temperatures a (gm/cm 3 ) Temperature ( C) Methanol Ethanol Propanol a Landolt, H.; Boernstein, R.; Roth, W. Physikalische-Chemische Tabellen, 5. Anlage; Springer Verlag: Berlin, The average and uncertainty are to be reported together, in this manner: ± cm, not as two separate columns. All derived quantities in any experiment should always be quoted with an associated uncertainty.

6 Experiment 1, page 6 Version of June 17, 2016 Discussion Questions 1. (a) How do your experimental values compare to literature values for the surface tension of these alcohols? (b) Is there any systematic trend in your results compared to the literature values? 2. From your experimental results alone (not from the literature values), is there any trend in the surface tension with number of carbons in the alcohol? 3. Based on the precision of your data, would you be able to distinguish the alcohols from each other by measuring the surface tension in this apparatus? Explain. 4. Is the surface tension of these alcohols higher or lower than that of water? Give a possible physical reason why this is so. 5. (a) Starting from Eq. (1.1) and definitions of thermodynamic parameters, derive an equation for the surface energy of a system in terms of the surface tension. Show all work. (This requires some consideration of the mathematics of thermodynamics.) (b) To determine the surface energy of an alcohol, what additional information is needed and how would you obtain that?

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