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Experimental research of heterogeneous nuclei in expansion chamber

By O. Bartoš


An expansion chamber has been developed to investigate experimentally homogeneous and heterogeneous nucleation processes in steam. A chamber design allows to measure in the laboratory but also in power plants using the steam withdrawn from the steam turbine. The purpose of the device is to provide a new approach to study the physics of non-equilibrium wet steam formation, which is one of the factors limiting the efficiency and reliability of steam turbines. The expanded steam or a known mixture of steam with a non-condensable gas rapidly expands in the expansion chamber. Due to adiabatic cooling, the temperature drops below the actual dew point. When reaching a sufficiently high supersaturation, droplets are nucleated. By tuning the supersaturation in the so-called nucleation pulse, particles of various size ranges can be activated. This fact is used in the present study to measure the aerosol particles present in the air. Homogeneous nucleation was negligible in this case. The experiment demonstrates the functionality of the device, data acquisition system and data evaluation methods

Topics: expansion chamber; nucleation; wet steam
Year: 2016
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