The Steady-State Properties of an Ion Exchange Membrane with Mobile Sites

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A study of the properties of the steady states of a system composed of two solutions separated by an ion exchange membrane having mobile sites is presented. It is assumed that the membrane is impermeable to coions; the solutions contain no more than two species of counterions, both of the same valence; and no flow of bulk solution occurs. Assuming that all ions are completely dissociated, behave ideally, and have constant mobilities throughout the membrane, explicit expressions are derived for the steady states of the electric current, individual fluxes, and concentration profiles as functions of the compositions of the solutions and of the difference of electric potential between them. The derived expressions are compared with those for an ion exchange membrane having fixed sites; and it is found that the expressions of certain quantities, such as the difference of electric potential between the two solutions for zero current or the ratio of the fluxes of the counterions as functions of the external parameters of the system, are the same for both types of membranes. On the other hand, differences in the behavior of the two types of membranes are found from other expressions-for example, the current-voltage relationship. In the mobile site ion exchanger the current asymptotically approaches finite limiting values for high positive and negative voltages while in the fixed site ion exchanger it is the conductance which approaches finite limiting values. © 1966, The Biophysical Society. All rights reserved.




Conti, F., & Eisenman, G. (1966). The Steady-State Properties of an Ion Exchange Membrane with Mobile Sites. Biophysical Journal, 6(3), 227–246.

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