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Abstract

The rate at which water is extracted from thoria sols was investigated by fluidizing single thoria sol droplets in 2-ethyl-1-hexanol (2EH) and measuring the diameter of a droplet over a period of time until shrinkage no longer occurred. Diameter data from both water and sol drops were obtained at 25°C. The experimental variables were initial drop diameter (0.1 to 0.2 cm), sol molarity equation image, and water concentration in the 2EH (2–12 mg./cc.). The water and sol droplet data were correlated by Equation (5). The single relationship for the fluidized water and sol drops verified that an organic-phase film surrounding the drop is the rate-controlling resistance. The sphere Reynolds number was based on the approach velocity and varied from 0.4 to 14. The Schmidt number for the system was fixed at 35,700. During the extraction of water, the mass transfer coefficients for fluidized sol drops were found to depend only on the molarity of the sol. By expressing the mass transfer coefficients as a function of the density difference between the aqueous sol and the organic phase, an equation was derived to predict the gelation time required for any initial sol molarity and drop diameter fluidized in 2 EH at 25°C.