The Decomposition of Liquids by Contact with Cellulose

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THE recent work of Dr. Gore, on “The Decomposition of Liquids by Contact with Powdered Silica,” presents a striking resemblance to what has from time to time been ascertained with such substances as cellulose. In fact, the properties ascribed to silica are very likely shared under some conditions by colloids in general, whether they be “organic” or “inorganic” bodies. Cellulose, when immersed in diluted solutions of some metallic salts, has the power of abstracting from them a certain quantity of the salt for which it may have no chemical affinity as ordinarily understood. The amount of salt abstracted is dependent upon several conditions: the degree of dilution of the salt; the ratio of cellulose to salt; the ratio of cellulose to weight of solution; the temperature; the physical condition of the cellulose; and the chemical constitution of the cellulose.

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