Oxygenated hydrocarbon ionic surfactants exhibit CO2 solubility

Xin Fan, Vijay K. Potluri, M. Chandler McLeod, Yang Wang, Juncheng Liu, Robert M. Enick, Andrew D. Hamilton, Christopher B. Roberts, J. Karl Johnson, Eric J. Beckman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Several oxygenated hydrocarbons, including acetylated sugars, poly(propylene glycol), and oligo-(vinyl acetate), have been used to generate CO2-soluble ionic surfactants. Surfactants with vinyl acetate tails yielded the most promising results, exhibiting levels of CO2 solubility comparable to those associated with fluorinated ionic surfactants. For example, a sodium sulfate with single, oligomeric vinyl acetate (VAc) tails consisting of 10 VAc repeat units was 7 wt % soluble in CO2 at 25 °C and 48 MPa. Upon introduction of water to these systems, only surfactants with the oligomeric vinyl acetate tails exhibited spectroscopic evidence of a polar environment that was capable of solubilizing the methyl orange into the CO2-rich phase. For example, a single-phase solution of CO 2, 0.15 wt % sodium bis(vinyl acetate)8 sulfosuccinate, and water, at water loading (W) values ranging from 10 to 40 at 25 °C and 34.5 MPa, exhibited a methyl orange peak at 423 nm. This result indicated that the core of a reverse micelle provided a microenvironment with a polarity similar to that of methanol. Quantum chemical calculations indicate that the acetylated sugars may be too hydrophilic to readily form reverse micelles, whereas the VAc-based surfactants appear to have the correct balance of hydrophilic and hydrophobic forces necessary to form reverse micelles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)11754-11762
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number33
StatePublished - Aug 24 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • General Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'Oxygenated hydrocarbon ionic surfactants exhibit CO2 solubility'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this