Determination of liquid-liquid critical point composition using 90 laser light scattering

J. Charles Williamson, Allison M. Brown, Elise N. Helvie, Kevin M. Dean

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Despite over a century of characterization efforts, liquid-liquid critical point compositions are difficult to identify with good accuracy. Reported values vary up to 10% for even well-studied systems. Here, a technique is presented for high-precision determination of the critical composition of a partially miscible binary liquid system. Ninety-degree laser light-scattering intensities from single-phase samples are analyzed using an equation derived from nonclassical power laws and the pseudospinodal approximation. Results are reported for four liquid-liquid systems (aniline + hexane, isobutyric acid + water, methanol + cyclohexane, and methanol + carbon disulfide). Compared to other methods, the 90 light-scattering approach has a strong dependence on composition near the critical point, is less affected by temperature fluctuations, and is insensitive to the presence of trace impurities in the samples. Critical compositions found with 90 light scattering are precise to the parts-per-thousand level and show long-term reproducibility.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number042610
JournalPhysical Review E
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 21 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Statistics and Probability
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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