- AMER INST PHYSICS
Mesoscale structure of 1-propanol aqueous solutions with propanol mole fraction x(p) ranging from 0.1 to 0.33 has been studied by means of small angle neutron scattering (SANS) and large-scale reverse Monte Carlo (RMC) technique. Analysis of the SANS intensities in terms of a fractal model shows that the fractal dimension d(f) of mesoscale structure of the solution is about 1.8-1.9 for water-rich solution and about 1.5 for propanol-rich solution. Percolation analysis on the RMC results reveals that the water molecules and the propanol molecules cluster, respectively, as a mass fractal, the dimension d(M) of which is about 2.3-2.5 for both clusters for water-rich solution. Furthermore, the distribution of the cluster size is expressed by a simple power law with an exponent tau of about 1.35-1.5 for the propanol clusters and 1.05-1.2 for the water clusters. These results imply that the current solution is characterized by polydisperse mass fractals. In fact, a theoretical relation for polydisperse system of mass fractals, d(f)=d(M)(2-tau), holds well in the current solution. The characteristic change in d(f) from 1.8-1.9 to 1.5 described above is attributed to the crossover between the water-rich regime and the propanol-rich regime. Most of the water molecules and the propanol molecules are located on the interface between clusters, and the water molecules form thin layers of about 10 Angstrom thick irrespective of 1-propanol content studied. (C) 2004 American Institute of Physics.
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