Probing the Time Scale for Bulk Equilibration and Mass Transport of Water in Amorphous Inorganic Aerosol

Kai-Kai Li, Feng Wang, Guang Zeng, Jonathan P. Reid, Yun-Hong Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


New techniques are required to explore directly the kinetics of water transport in aerosol between the gas and condensed phases, both at, high relative humidity (RH) close to saturation and at low RH where the role of amorphous states must be considered. Here, we present micro Raman measurements of the kinetics' of water transport between the bulk of a particle and the surrounding gas phase by examining the rate of exchange of D2O by H2O in droplets initially composed of MgSO4/D2O. The formation of an amorphous gel inhibits the response of the droplet composition to changes in the ambient RH and leads to a substantial reduction of the mass transfer rate of water in the droplet bulk with an apparent diffusion constant of 10(-15) to 10(-14) m(2) s(-1). These measurements are consistent with the imposition of a kinetic limitation on the time response of the aerosol particle size to changes in RH.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14397-14403
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry B
Issue number49
Publication statusPublished - 15 Dec 2011

Cite this