Structure of the nonionic surfactant triethoxy monooctylether C8E3 adsorbed at the free water surface, as seen from surface tension measurements and Monte Carlo simulations

András Paszternák, E. Kiss, P. Jedlovszky

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Abstract

The adsorption layer of the nonionic surfactant triethoxy monooctylether C8E3 has been investigated at the free water surface by means of both experimental and computer simulation methods. The surface tension of the aqueous solution of C8 E3 has been measured by pendant drop shape analysis in the entire concentration range in which C8 E3 is soluble in water. The data obtained from these measurements are used to derive the adsorption isotherm. The critical micellar concentration and the surface excess concentration of the saturated adsorption layer are found to be 7.48 mM and 4.03 μmolm2, respectively, the latter value corresponding to the average area per molecule of 41 Å2. In order to analyze the molecular level structure of the unsaturated adsorption layer, Monte Carlo simulations have been performed at four different surface concentration values, i.e., 0.68, 1.36, 2.04, and 2.72 μmolm2, respectively. It has been found that the water surface is already almost fully covered at the lowest surface density value investigated, and the adsorbed molecules show a strong preference for lying parallel with the interface in elongated conformations. No sign of the penetration of the hydrophilic triethoxy headgroups into the aqueous phase to any extent has been observed. With increasing surface densities the preferential orientation of the apolar octyl tails gradually turns from lying parallel with the interface to pointing toward the vapor phase by their CH3 end, whereas the conformation of the adsorbed molecules becomes gradually less elongated. Both of these changes lead to the increase of the number of C8E3 molecules being in a direct contact (i.e., forming hydrogen bonds) with water. However, the increasing number of the C8E3 molecules hydrogen bonded to water is found to be accompanied by the weakening of this binding, i.e., the decrease of both the number of hydrogen bonds a bound C8E3 molecule forms with water and the magnitude of the average binding energy of the adsorbed C8E3 molecules.

Original languageEnglish
Article number124704
JournalThe Journal of Chemical Physics
Volume122
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 22 2005

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Nonionic surfactants
surface water
Surface tension
interfacial tension
surfactants
Molecules
Water
molecules
simulation
adsorption
Adsorption
water
Conformations
Hydrogen bonds
hydrogen bonds
Monte Carlo simulation
Binding energy
Adsorption isotherms
Hydrogen
isotherms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics

Cite this

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title = "Structure of the nonionic surfactant triethoxy monooctylether C8E3 adsorbed at the free water surface, as seen from surface tension measurements and Monte Carlo simulations",
abstract = "The adsorption layer of the nonionic surfactant triethoxy monooctylether C8E3 has been investigated at the free water surface by means of both experimental and computer simulation methods. The surface tension of the aqueous solution of C8 E3 has been measured by pendant drop shape analysis in the entire concentration range in which C8 E3 is soluble in water. The data obtained from these measurements are used to derive the adsorption isotherm. The critical micellar concentration and the surface excess concentration of the saturated adsorption layer are found to be 7.48 mM and 4.03 μmolm2, respectively, the latter value corresponding to the average area per molecule of 41 {\AA}2. In order to analyze the molecular level structure of the unsaturated adsorption layer, Monte Carlo simulations have been performed at four different surface concentration values, i.e., 0.68, 1.36, 2.04, and 2.72 μmolm2, respectively. It has been found that the water surface is already almost fully covered at the lowest surface density value investigated, and the adsorbed molecules show a strong preference for lying parallel with the interface in elongated conformations. No sign of the penetration of the hydrophilic triethoxy headgroups into the aqueous phase to any extent has been observed. With increasing surface densities the preferential orientation of the apolar octyl tails gradually turns from lying parallel with the interface to pointing toward the vapor phase by their CH3 end, whereas the conformation of the adsorbed molecules becomes gradually less elongated. Both of these changes lead to the increase of the number of C8E3 molecules being in a direct contact (i.e., forming hydrogen bonds) with water. However, the increasing number of the C8E3 molecules hydrogen bonded to water is found to be accompanied by the weakening of this binding, i.e., the decrease of both the number of hydrogen bonds a bound C8E3 molecule forms with water and the magnitude of the average binding energy of the adsorbed C8E3 molecules.",
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T1 - Structure of the nonionic surfactant triethoxy monooctylether C8E3 adsorbed at the free water surface, as seen from surface tension measurements and Monte Carlo simulations

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AU - Kiss, E.

AU - Jedlovszky, P.

PY - 2005/3/22

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N2 - The adsorption layer of the nonionic surfactant triethoxy monooctylether C8E3 has been investigated at the free water surface by means of both experimental and computer simulation methods. The surface tension of the aqueous solution of C8 E3 has been measured by pendant drop shape analysis in the entire concentration range in which C8 E3 is soluble in water. The data obtained from these measurements are used to derive the adsorption isotherm. The critical micellar concentration and the surface excess concentration of the saturated adsorption layer are found to be 7.48 mM and 4.03 μmolm2, respectively, the latter value corresponding to the average area per molecule of 41 Å2. In order to analyze the molecular level structure of the unsaturated adsorption layer, Monte Carlo simulations have been performed at four different surface concentration values, i.e., 0.68, 1.36, 2.04, and 2.72 μmolm2, respectively. It has been found that the water surface is already almost fully covered at the lowest surface density value investigated, and the adsorbed molecules show a strong preference for lying parallel with the interface in elongated conformations. No sign of the penetration of the hydrophilic triethoxy headgroups into the aqueous phase to any extent has been observed. With increasing surface densities the preferential orientation of the apolar octyl tails gradually turns from lying parallel with the interface to pointing toward the vapor phase by their CH3 end, whereas the conformation of the adsorbed molecules becomes gradually less elongated. Both of these changes lead to the increase of the number of C8E3 molecules being in a direct contact (i.e., forming hydrogen bonds) with water. However, the increasing number of the C8E3 molecules hydrogen bonded to water is found to be accompanied by the weakening of this binding, i.e., the decrease of both the number of hydrogen bonds a bound C8E3 molecule forms with water and the magnitude of the average binding energy of the adsorbed C8E3 molecules.

AB - The adsorption layer of the nonionic surfactant triethoxy monooctylether C8E3 has been investigated at the free water surface by means of both experimental and computer simulation methods. The surface tension of the aqueous solution of C8 E3 has been measured by pendant drop shape analysis in the entire concentration range in which C8 E3 is soluble in water. The data obtained from these measurements are used to derive the adsorption isotherm. The critical micellar concentration and the surface excess concentration of the saturated adsorption layer are found to be 7.48 mM and 4.03 μmolm2, respectively, the latter value corresponding to the average area per molecule of 41 Å2. In order to analyze the molecular level structure of the unsaturated adsorption layer, Monte Carlo simulations have been performed at four different surface concentration values, i.e., 0.68, 1.36, 2.04, and 2.72 μmolm2, respectively. It has been found that the water surface is already almost fully covered at the lowest surface density value investigated, and the adsorbed molecules show a strong preference for lying parallel with the interface in elongated conformations. No sign of the penetration of the hydrophilic triethoxy headgroups into the aqueous phase to any extent has been observed. With increasing surface densities the preferential orientation of the apolar octyl tails gradually turns from lying parallel with the interface to pointing toward the vapor phase by their CH3 end, whereas the conformation of the adsorbed molecules becomes gradually less elongated. Both of these changes lead to the increase of the number of C8E3 molecules being in a direct contact (i.e., forming hydrogen bonds) with water. However, the increasing number of the C8E3 molecules hydrogen bonded to water is found to be accompanied by the weakening of this binding, i.e., the decrease of both the number of hydrogen bonds a bound C8E3 molecule forms with water and the magnitude of the average binding energy of the adsorbed C8E3 molecules.

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