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The evaporation kinetics of pure water droplets at varying drying rates and the use of evaporation rates to infer the gas phase relative humidity

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23453-23466
Number of pages14
JournalPhysical Chemistry Chemical Physics
Issue number36
Early online date31 Aug 2018
DateAccepted/In press - 28 Aug 2018
DateE-pub ahead of print - 31 Aug 2018
DatePublished (current) - 28 Sep 2018


Numerous analytical models have been applied to describe the evaporation/condensation kinetics of volatile components from aerosol particles for use in many applications. However, the applicability of these models for treating cases that lead to substantial and rapid changes in particle temperature due to, for example, evaporative cooling remain to be compared with measurements. We consider three typical treatments, comparing predictions of the evaporation rates of pure water droplets over a wide range in gas phase relative humidity (RH) and exploring the sensitivity of the predictions to uncertainties in the thermophysical gas and condensed-phase parameters. We also compare predictions from the three treatments to measurements of the evaporation rates of pure water droplets with varying RH using an electrodynamic balance (EDB), concluding that only two of the model treatments are sufficiently able to account for the level of evaporative cooling (typically as high as 12 K). Finally, we show that the RH can be inferred accurately from the evaporation rate of pure water droplets over the full range in accessible RH and comparison with the model predictions (within absolute uncertainties of 2.5% RH over the range 20% to 95% RH), considering the level of agreement with independent measurements made through determining the equilibrated size of aqueous sodium chloride and sodium nitrate droplets.

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    Rights statement: This is the author accepted manuscript (AAM). The final published version (version of record) is available online via Royal Society of Chemistry at . Please refer to any applicable terms of use of the publisher.

    Accepted author manuscript, 1.38 MB, PDF document


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