In this work, a modified free-volume (FV) model based on the UNIQUAC-Nonrandom factor (UNIQUAC-NRF) model developed by Haghtalab and Asadollahi was proposed. While the combinatorial part of the proposed model for activity coefficient takes the same form as that of the entropic free-volume (entropic-FV) model, the residual part is similar to that of the UNIQUAC-NRF model. The proposed model, i.e., the FV-UNIQUAC-NRF model overcomes the main shortcoming of the original UNIQUAC-NRF model in predicting the lower critical solution temperature (LCST) for polymer solutions. The appearance of the LCST is believed to be attributed to the existence of the free volume differences between polymer and solvent molecules. Thus, the models without considering such differences fail to predict the LCST behavior of polymer solutions. The proposed model was applied to correlate the experimental data of (liquid + liquid) equilibria (LLE) for a number of binary polymer solutions at various temperatures. The values for the binary characteristic energy parameters for the proposed model and the FV-UNIQUAC model along with their average relative deviations from the experimental data were reported. It should be stated that the binary polymer solutions studied in this work were considered as monodisperse. The results obtained from the FV-UNIQUAC-NRF model were compared with those obtained from the FV-UNIQUAC model. The results of the proposed model show that the FV-UNIQUAC-NRF model can accurately correlate the experimental data for LLE of polymer solutions studied in this work. Also the error produced from the FV-UNIQUAC-NRF model show the slightly better accuracy in comparison with that from the FV-UNIQUAC model. The clear advantage of the proposed model, contrary to the original UNIQUAC-NRF model, is its capability in predicting the LCST for binary polymer solutions.
Journal of Chemical Thermodynamics, 2006, Vol 38, Issue 7, p. 923-928