Modeling the dynamic behavior of a droplet evaporation device for the delivery of isotopically calibrated low-humidity water vapor

Kerstel, Erik

A model is presented that gives a quantitative description of the dynamic behavior of a low-humidity water vapor generator in terms of water vapor concentration (humidity) and isotope ratios. The generator is based on the evaporation of a nanoliter-sized droplet produced at the end of a syringe needle by balancing the inlet water flow and the evaporation of water from the droplet surface into a dry-air stream. The humidity level is adjusted by changing the speed of the high-precision syringe pump and, if needed, the dry-air flow. The generator was developed specifically for use with laser-based water isotope analyzers in Antarctica, and it was recently described in citxref_text.1#bib1.bibx21Leroy-Dos Santos et al. (#bib1.bibx212021). Apart from operating parameters such as temperature, pressure, and water and dry-air flows, the model has as “free” input parameters: water isotope fractionation factors and the evaporation rate. We show that the experimental data constrain these parameters to physically realistic values that are in reasonable to good agreement with available literature values. With the advent of new ultraprecise isotope ratio spectrometers, the approach used here may permit the measurement of not only the evaporation rate but also the effective fractionation factors and isotopologue-dependent diffusivity ratios, in the evaporation of small droplets.

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Kerstel, Erik: Modeling the dynamic behavior of a droplet evaporation device for the delivery of isotopically calibrated low-humidity water vapor. 2021. Copernicus Publications.

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Rechteinhaber: Erik Kerstel

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