Internal Degrees of Freedom as a Basis for Isotopic Effects in Thermodiffusion

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We present a model that relates isotope effects in thermodiffusion to changes in internal degrees of freedom associated with rotational and vibrational motion. The model uses general material transport equations for binary non-isothermal liquid systems, derived using non-equilibrium thermodynamics in our previous work. The equilibrium chemical potentials of the components at constant pressure are derived using statistical mechanics. In evaluating the model, we use experimental data on changes in the Soret coefficient of various hydrocarbons in perprotonated and perdeuterated cyclohexane. We also compare predictions of the model with experimental data on the Soret coefficient in isotopic mixtures. In all cases, the model is consistent with experimental data and computations.