High pressure nucleation in water/nitrogen systems

C.C.M. Luijten, K.J. Bosschaart, M.E.H. Dongen, van

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    Nucleation rate measurements of water in the presence of nitrogen as a carrier gas are reported at total pressures near 10, 25, and 40 bar, and temperatures of 230 and 250 K. The results were obtained using our pulse-expansion wave tube, particularly suited for high pressure nucleation research. Enhanced fugacity of water vapor in the mixture, due to the presence of nitrogen, was quantitatively taken into account. Values of the enhancement factors as a function of pressure and temperature were correlated from accurate gravimetric measurements available in literature. The results demonstrate a strong influence of nitrogen pressure on the nucleation behavior of water, when temperature and supersaturation are kept fixed. The effect is associated with a decrease of the surface tension of water, due to the adsorption of nitrogen onto the liquid surface. A tentative model is presented that qualitatively describes this decreasing surface tension with pressure. The competition between the opposing effects of enhanced fugacity and decreasing surface tension is identified as a complicating factor in detecting pressure effects on nucleation. This conclusion is expected to hold for other vapor/carrier gas systems as well
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)8116-8123
    Number of pages8
    JournalJournal of Chemical Physics
    Issue number19
    Publication statusPublished - 1997

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