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Date:      Tue, 31 Dec 2002 13:53:23 -0500
From:      Chuck Swiger <cswiger@mac.com>
To:        freebsd-questions@FreeBSD.ORG
Subject:   Re: Water Damage
Message-ID:  <3E11E7A3.5070404@mac.com>
References:  <20021230110818.A91089-100000@cactus.fi.uba.ar> <3E11070B.5000306@jcdurham.com>

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Jim Durham wrote:
[ ... ]
> That's an excellent idea because the alcohol will "absorb" the water (I 
> believe the correct term is that water is "misable" in alcohol), so when 
> the alcohol evaporates it takes the water with it.

Yes, water and alcohol are misable in any proportions, but there's slightly 
more to it than that.  You cannot get 100% pure alcohol via distillation-- 
this is why isopropyl rubbing alcohol goes up to 91% alcohol, and why ethanol 
like grain only goes up to 195 proof (~98%).

[ If you try to concentrate the alcohol past that point, the alcohol will 
absorb water vapor right out of the air, just like the silica gel packets used 
in shipping do.  Called "azeotropic", which to most people simply means that 
chemists use funny words. ]

-Chuck


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