Oil and water do mix!
Australian National University chemistry professor Richard Pashley has discovered a way to mix oil and water, which contradicts the age-old proverb. The secret? – you have to take the gases out of the water first, mainly oxygen and nitrogen. Then oil and water mix spontaneously and stay that way for a long time.
Until the discovery, oil and water could only be mixed with the addition of detergents. Removing the gases was not difficult, and industry had been taking oxygen out of water for many years to make it less corrosive. There are many potential commercial applications, especially for injectable drugs that are now dissolved in water with detergents added that sometimes caused side effects. A US perfume manufacturer which found some customers were allergic to the detergents it used to dissolve its fragrance agents in water is also interested.
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