Entropy Generation of a Coagulating Aerosol

Entropy Generation of a Coagulating Aerosol

Adam Boies1 and Nihal El Fahim1

1University of Cambridge, Department of Engineering


The dynamics of aerosol coagulation is often dominated by the Brownian collisions motion of particles, as described by the Smoluchowski equation. During this process, the size distribution of particles changes and is well-explained by existing kinetic theory which accounts for the evolution in time of particles number density. For sufficiently long times, the kinetic theory of the coagulation process is known to reach a self-preserving size distribution[[i]]. While the kinetic process is well understood, the thermodynamics associated with coagulation has received relatively little attention. Entropy for example – a critical thermodynamic property – has been employed within the informational sense to explain the evolution of coagulating aerosols, but no study has attempted to identify the components of entropy generation with a coalescing aerosol.  

i      Friedlander, S. K. (2000). Smoke, Dust, and Haze: Fundamentals of Aerosol Dynamics. (K. E. Gubbins, Ed.), Topics in Chemical Engineering: A Series of Textbooks and Monographs (2nd ed.). New York: Oxford University Press.

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