Solid-like Behaviors Govern Evaporative Transport in Adsorbed Water Nanofilms

K Montazeri and MJA Qomi and YJ Won, ACS APPLIED MATERIALS & INTERFACES, 12, 53416-53424 (2020).

DOI: 10.1021/acsami.0c13647

The thermophysical attributes of water molecules confined in a sub- nanometer thickness significantly differ from those in bulk liquid where their molecular behaviors start governing interfacial physics at the nanoscale. In this study, we elucidate nanothin film evaporation by employing a computational approach from a molecular perspective. As the liquid thickness decreases, the solid-like characteristics of adsorbed water nanofilms make the resistance at solid-liquid interfaces or Kapitza resistance significant. Kapitza resistances not only show a strong correlation with the surface wettability but also dominate the overall thermal resistance during evaporation rather than the resistance at evaporating liquid-vapor interfaces. Once the liquid thickness reaches the critical value of 0.5-0.6 nm, the evaporation kinetics is suppressed due to the excessive forces between the liquid and solid atoms. The understanding of molecular-level behaviors explains how a hydrophilic surface plays a role in determining evaporation rates from an atomistic perspective.

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