Homogeneous Nucleation and the Spinodal Line

[+] Author and Article Information
J. H. Lienhard

Mechanical Engineering Department, University of Houston, Houston, Tex. 77004

Amir Karimi

Boiling and Phase Change Laboratory, Mechanical Engineering Department, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40506

J. Heat Transfer 103(1), 61-64 (Feb 01, 1981) (4 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3244431 History: Received July 15, 1980; Online October 20, 2009


The limit of homogeneous nucleation in a liquid is shown to lie very close to its liquid spinodal line. It is also argued that the homogeneous nucleation prediction should be based on a comparison of the critical work of nucleation with the “potential well” energy instead of the kinetic molecular energy. The result is a new prediction of the liquid spinodal line for water that is valid to large negative pressures. This prediction compares well with spinodal points obtained by extrapolating liquid and vapor water data with the Himpan equation.

Copyright © 1981 by ASME
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