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Oil in Water Emulsion

We know that the combination of two or more substances results the formation of a mixture. On the basis of phases of different components, mixtures can be classified as homogenous and heterogeneous substances.  A homogenous mixture can be defined as the mixture which has the same uniform appearance and composition throughout. They are commonly called as solutions. The heterogeneous mixtures have different phases of components. Solutions are most common examples of homogenous mixtures. Solutions can be defines as the mixture of substances in such way that their relative amount changed gradually. Here the substance which is present in lesser amount is called as solute whereas the substance which is present in large amount is called as solvent. So we can say that solution is a mixture of solute and solvent.

On the basis of homogenous nature of solutions, they can be further classified as true solution, suspension and colloidal solution. The solutions in which the particle size of solute is less than 10-9 m or 1 nm are called as true solutions. For example the solution of table salt in water is a true solution as the particle size of table salt is less than 1 nm so they dissolved completely and cannot be seen by naked eyes. In the true solution, the solute particles cannot be filtered through filter paper also. Another type of solutions is suspensions which are heterogeneous mixtures. The particle size in suspensions is greater than 1000nm so these particles usually settled down at the bottom of solution. For example when we dissolve sand in water, the particles of sand distribute evenly in solution but after some time, they will settle down at the bottom.  The particles of suspension can be seen with naked eye. Colloidal solutions are also heterogeneous solutions in which the particle size is intermediate value of true solution and suspension. The particle size is around 1-1000 nm. 

Some common examples of colloidal solutions are smoke, milk, gem etc. In smoke, the tiny dust particles in air. The particle size is small enough in colloidal solutions so they cannot be seen through naked eye and can easily pass through filter paper. That is the reason, parchment paper or animal membrane are used to block the colloidal particles. On the basis of different phases and medium, colloidal solutions can be different types. 

 Dispersed Phase 
 Dispersion Medium   Colloidal solution   Example 
 Solid  Liquid  Sol  Mud
 Solid  Solid  Solid sol  Gems
 Solid  Gas  Aero sols  Smoke
 Liquid  Solid  Gel  Curd, Cheese
 Liquid  Liquid  Emulsion  Milk, Cream
 Liquid  Gas  Liquid aero sol  Clouds, fog and mist 
 Gas  Solid  Solid foam  Pumica
 Gas  Liquid  Foam  Whipped cream

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Oil in Water Emulsion Definition

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Emulsion is a type of colloidal solution in which both dispersion phase and dispersion medium are liquid in state. Some common examples of emulsion are milk, butter, chocolate milk, cookie dough and whipped cream water in benzene and cream. The mixture of oil and water is also an example of emulsion. When we mix oil and water, the oil droplets disperse throughout the water.

How to Make Oil in Water Emulsion?

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To make the oil and water emulsion, mix the same amount of water and oil. When we mix oil and water, oil will float on top of the water surface. So we can say that oil and water make two separate layers which can easily separate out. That is an example of emulsion in which the components are not soluble with each other.

Water in Oil Emulsion vs. Oil in Water Emulsion

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On the basis of water loving nature, emulsions can be two types; hydrophobic and hydrophilic emulsions. Hydrophobic emulsion doesn't dissolve in water whereas hydrophilic emulsions can easily dissolve in water. So oil in water is an example of hydrophobic emulsion. So hydrophobic and hydrophilic substances show opposite nature and cannot mix together even after mixing. A substance which is used to mix hydrophobic and a hydrophilic material is called as an emulsifier like for oil in water emulsion, egg acts as emulsifier. Emulsifier acts as bridge between both hydrophobic and hydrophilic substance. Oil-in-water (O/W) and water-in-oil (W/O) are two basic types of emulsions. 

Oil in Water Emulsion and Water in Oil Emulsion
We know that emulsion contains a continuous phase which suspends the droplets of component. This is called as dispersed phase. In case of oil-in-water emulsion the dispersed medium is the water and the dispersed phase is the oil. On the contrary, in case of water-in-oil emulsion the oil is the dispersion medium and water is dispersion phase. For example cream is oil in water emulsion whereas butter is water in oil emulsion. 

Water in Oil Emulsion Preparation

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There are several methods for the preparation of emulsions like use of mechanical force, emulsifier, thickener etc. We can apply mechanical force that break down the dispersed phase into small droplets and later phase dispersed into dispersion medium. Emulsifier also helps to prepare emulsion as it can mix with hydrophilic and hydrophobic phase. Addition of thickener to dispersion medium stabilizes the emulsion by preventing the motion of dispersed phase in medium. For example for water in oil emulsion, emulsifier mustard and thickening agents like xanthan gum are used.

Water in Oil Emulsion Examples

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In an emulsion, dispersed phase is present with some dispersion medium. In case of water-in-oil emulsions, water droplets are dispersed in a continuous oil phase. Water-in-oil emulsions are more common in oil industries. These emulsions are also called as oil emulsions. Butter, cold cream and cod liver oil are some common examples of water in oil emulsions.

Demulsifier for Oil in Water Emulsion

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Some chemicals are used to separate the emulsions like water in oil are called as demulsifiers. They are also known as emulsion breakers. Demulsifier play important role in the processing of crude oil. Demulsifiers have polymeric chains like ethylene oxides and polypropylene oxides of alcohol, ethoxylated phenols, ethoxylated nonylphenols, ethoxylated alcohols and amines, polyhydric alcohols, ethoxylated resins and sulphonic acid salts. 
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