Lifetime of a Nanodroplet: Kinetic Effects and Regime Transitions

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A transition from a d2 to a d law is observed in molecular dynamics (MD) simulations when the diameter (d) of an evaporating droplet reduces to the order of the vapor's mean free path; this cannot be explained by classical theory. This Letter shows that the d law can be predicted within the Navier-Stokes-Fourier (NSF) paradigm if a temperature-jump boundary condition derived from kinetic theory is utilized. The results from this model agree with those from MD in terms of the total lifetime, droplet radius, and temperature, while the classical d2 law underpredicts the lifetime of the droplet by a factor of 2. Theories beyond NSF are also employed in order to investigate vapor rarefaction effects within the Knudsen layer adjacent to the interface.




Rana, A. S., Lockerby, D. A., & Sprittles, J. E. (2019). Lifetime of a Nanodroplet: Kinetic Effects and Regime Transitions. Physical Review Letters, 123(15).

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