On the Role of Solute Polarizability in Determining the Solubilities of Gases in Liquids

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Understanding the factors determining the solubilities of gases in liquids is important from both practical and theoretical standpoints. Gas solute polarizability can be expected to be a significant influence on solubility in many cases. The importance of gas solute polarizability in determining solubility in several solvents has been assessed using regression analysis. Two measures of gas solute polarizability have been employed: (1) a carefully compiled collection of experimental values from the literature; and (2) values calculated using an additive method proposed by Bosque and Sales. Whereas solute polarizability plays very little role in determining solubility in water, it plays a dominant role in other solvents, including benzene, hexane, 1-octanol, and ethanol. The results are interpreted in terms of the dominant intermolecular interactions prevailing in each solvent.