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Published January 1997 | public
Journal Article

Experimental Measurement of Competitive Ion-Induced and Binary Homogeneous Nucleation in SO₂/H₂O/N₂ Mixtures


Alpha-ray radiolysis of SO₂/H₂O/N₂ gas mixtures is carried out to investigate the competitive processes of ion-induced and binary homogeneous nucleation in this system. Charged particles in the system are indicative of ion-induced nucleation and most likely involve water clusters. Charged particle neutralization was prevented by application of a dc electric field, therefore, uncharged particles in the system result from homogeneous nucleation. Hydroxyl (OH) radicals are generated by the a-ray radiolysis. Oxidation of SO₂ by OH radicals leads to sulfuric acid (H₂SO₄) vapor molecules and to subsequent binary homogeneous nucleation of H₂SO₄/H₂O. At increased SO₂ concentrations the contribution of binary homogeneous nucleation increases relative to that of ion-induced nucleation. Electrical mobility distributions of bipolar ions and nanometer-sized charged particles were measured with a cluster-differential mobility analyzer combined with a Faraday cup electrometer. In this system, ion-induced nucleation occurred preferentially on negative rather than positive ions.

Additional Information

This work was partly supported by Grant-in-Aid for Developmental Scientific Research (No. 07555235) and Grant-in-Aid for International Scientific Research (Joint Research) (No. 08044151) from the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, and Proposal-Based Advanced Industrial Technology R&D Program of NEDO (No. C-1111) (KO). Acknowledgment is also made to National Science Foundation grant ATM9307603 (IHS).

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