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Quantifying concentrations of chemical compounds in solutions is often an important analytical demand in order to control a chemical process. Quick, accurate, and efficient methods are always preferred. This research investigated the potential for Fourier transform infrared (FTIR spectroscopy) and surface tension to determine concentration accurately and efficiently for solutions of oleic acid (OA) in hexane (HXN) or acetonitrile (ACN). The peaks for the functional groups belonging to OA, HXN, and ACN were measured from solutions at different concentrations. Three FTIR spectra were taken for each solution mixture. Similarly, the surface tension was measured at different concentrations using a surface tensiometer. For the OA/HXN mixtures, calibration curves were created for FTIR and preliminary calibration curves were created for surface tension. For OA/ACN, a noticeable phase separation occurred. This discovery was confirmed after the fact by a paper in 1952. The calibration results were successfully applied to an extraction process for OA/ACN using hexane. The findings show promise for continuation in an independent study project for Fall 2023.


Research and Creative Experience for Undergraduates (RCEU)



College Name

College of Science


Jeffrey J. Weimer

Publication Date


Document Type



Fourier transform infrared (FTIR), surface tension, extractions, quantifying solutions

The Prospective Use of FTIR and Surface Tension in Measuring Concentrations



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