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Translucent, low-freezing point solution

  1. Jun 20, 2012 #1
    Looking for advice on a solution that would be able to dissipate/hold light.

    As a poor example, a solution that if contained within a tube and had a light shone from below, would resemble a ‘light-saber.’

    The solution would therefore need to be translucent/have a consistent turbidity (no settling).

    Furthermore, the solution must have a very low freezing point.

    Hope this is coherent and not a complete load of bosh. Thank you for any advice / suggestions.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 21, 2012 #2
    The first thing that comes to mind is glycerol. It is a pretty harmless food additive, and its freezing point is somewhere around -38 °C. It is totally clear too. Hope this helps.
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2012
  4. Jun 21, 2012 #3
    Thanks for that.
    Glycerol, or Ethylene glycol (anti-freeze), seem promising for the low-freezing point.
    However, can you think of something that could be added to make the solution translucent? Ideally, a sort of white-cloudy? And one that would not settle over time?
    Thanks again!
  5. Jun 21, 2012 #4
    Mix some milk into it! This should help. Most things that you try will settle over time, but this is just the nature of the earth. Gravity will cause the heavier molecule to sit below the lighter molecule. But this should take days to happen.
  6. Jul 4, 2012 #5
    You might want to see literature on the Tyndall effect and how colloidal suspensions are stabilized. If you want the effect to be stable over a temperature range, you will have some difficulties since the colloid may aggregate by crystallization. Sols and gels are two variations on the theme.

    The formation of WO and OW emulsions are some of the most studied colloids as far as stabilizing and destabilizing. If you choose EGlycol or Glycerin you will be looking for OW emulsions that are unaffected by cold temp for the O phase. Milk is an example of an OW emulsion that is "stable"- until it is frozen or ionic strength is altered of the W phase.

    Hopefully viscosity is not a minus for your application. Else the most stable colloid sols are "glasses", and "solid".
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