The surface tension of an aqueous solution of a hexadecyltrimethylammonium bromide (HTAB) and dodecyltrimethylammonium bromide (DTAB) mixture was measured as a function of the total molality and the composition of DTAB at 298.15 K under atmospheric pressure. The phase diagrams of adsorption and micelle formation were constructed and the excess Gibbs energy was evaluated by analyzing the phase diagrams thermodynamically. Both the excess Gibbs energy in the adsorbed film and the excess surface area are negative; therefore the mutual interaction between HTAB and DTAB is said to be stronger than that between the same species and is enhanced with increasing adsorption. By combining the results with those obtained in previous studies, we claimed that DTAB molecules can use effectively the space among the hydrocarbon chains of HTAB molecules and their polar head groups take a staggered arrangement at the surface so as to reduce the electrostatic repulsion. Consequently the dispersion force between hydrophobic chains becomes stronger. Furthermore, the comparison of the excess Gibbs energy in the adsorbed film with that in the micelle shows that the staggered arrangement of molecules is not necessary in the spherical micelle.
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