Multicomponent diffusion coefficients from microfluidics using Raman microspectroscopy†
Diffusion is slow. Thus, diffusion experiments are intrinsically time-consuming and laborious. Additionally, the experimental effort is multiplied for multicomponent systems as the determination of multicomponent diffusion coefficients typically requires several experiments. To reduce the experimental effort, we present the first microfluidic diffusion measurement method for multicomponent liquid systems. The measurement setup combines a microfluidic chip with Raman microspectroscopy. Excellent agreement between experimental results and literature data is achieved for the binary system cyclohexane + toluene and the ternary system 1-propanol + 1-chlorobutane + heptane. The Fick diffusion coefficients are obtained from fitting a multicomponent convection-diffusion model to the mole fractions measured in experiments. Ternary diffusion coefficients can be obtained from a single experiment; high accuracy is already obtained from two experiments. Advantages of the presented measurement method are thus short measurement times, reduced sample consumption, and less experiments for the determination of a multicomponent diffusion coefficient.