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Alcohol by volume

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**Alcohol Content Measurement:**

– Alcohol by Volume (ABV)
– ABV measures ethanol content in alcoholic beverages.
– Defined as milliliters of pure ethanol in 100mL of solution at 20°C.
– Alc/vol is a globally recognized standard measure.
– In France, ABV is sometimes referred to as degrees Gay-Lussac.
– Alcohol proof and alcohol by weight are alternative methods of measuring alcohol content.

**Effects of Alcohol Content:**

– Volume Change with ABV
– Mixing alcohol solutions of different strengths alters volume.
– Partial molar volume explains volume changes.
Water and ethanol attract due to polarity.
– Alc/vol differs from volume fraction (v/v).
– Max difference between alc/vol and v/v is less than 2.5%.

**Thresholds and Levels:**

– Legal thresholds exist for alcohol content in drinks.
– Some low-alcohol drinks are considered non-intoxicating.
– Healthy individuals find it hard to get intoxicated by low-alcohol beverages.
Ethanol fermentation halts at a certain alc/vol level.
– Yeasts have tolerance limits for alcohol content.

**Typical Alcohol Levels in Beverages:**

– Various beverages have different typical alc/vol percentages.
– Alc/vol ranges from 0.05% in low-alcohol drinks to 95% in vodka.
– Different wines have alc/vol ranging from 5.5% to 25%.
– Spirits like rum, gin, and whisky have alc/vol ranging from 37.5% to 68%.

**Biological Impacts and Estimation Methods:**

– Low-alcohol drinks limit intoxication due to slow metabolism.
– Kidneys can excrete limited water per hour, affecting intoxication.
Yeast tolerance sets upper limits for alc/vol in non-distilled drinks.
Water intoxication risk may precede alcohol intoxication.
– Practical estimation of alcohol content involves fermentation and specific gravity measurement.

Alcohol by volume (Wikipedia)

Alcohol by volume (abbreviated as alc/vol) is a standard measure of how much alcohol (ethanol) is contained in a given volume of an alcoholic beverage (expressed as a volume percent). It is defined as the number of millilitres (mL) of pure ethanol present in 100 mL (3.5 imp fl oz; 3.4 US fl oz) of solution at 20 °C (68 °F). The number of millilitres of pure ethanol is the mass of the ethanol divided by its density at 20 °C (68 °F), which is 0.78945 g/mL (0.82353 oz/US fl oz; 0.79122 oz/imp fl oz; 0.45633 oz/cu in). The alc/vol standard is used worldwide. The International Organization of Legal Metrology has tables of density of water–ethanol mixtures at different concentrations and temperatures.

The alcohol by volume shown on a bottle of absinthe

In some countries, e.g. France, alcohol by volume is often referred to as degrees Gay-Lussac (after the French chemist Joseph Louis Gay-Lussac), although there is a slight difference since the Gay-Lussac convention uses the International Standard Atmosphere value for temperature, 15 °C (59 °F).

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