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Gibbs Free Energy and Reaction Rate Acceleration in and on Microdroplets

Physics Department, Imperial College London, London SW7 2AZ, UK
Entropy 2019, 21(11), 1044; https://doi.org/10.3390/e21111044
Received: 9 September 2019 / Revised: 25 October 2019 / Accepted: 25 October 2019 / Published: 26 October 2019
Recent observations show that many reactions are accelerated in microdroplets compared to bulk liquid and gas media. This acceleration has been shown to feature Gibbs free energy changes, ΔG, that are negative and so reaction enabling, compared to the reaction in bulk fluid when it is positive and so reaction blocking. Here, we argue how these ΔG changes are relatable to the crowding enforced by microdroplets and to scale invariance. It is argued that turbulent flow is present in microdroplets, which span meso and macroscales. That enables scale invariant methods to arrive at chemical potentials for the substances involved. G and ΔG can be computed from the difference between the whole microdroplet and the bulk medium, and also for individual chemical species in both cases, including separately the microdroplet’s surface film and interior, provided sufficiently fine resolution is available in the observations. Such results can be compared with results computed by quantum statistical mechanics using molecular spectroscopic data. This proposed research strategy therefore offers a path to test its validity in comparing traditional equilibrium quantum statistical thermodynamic tests of microdroplets with those based on scale invariant analysis of both their 2D surface and 3D interior fluid flows. View Full-Text
Keywords: microdroplets; reaction rates; Gibbs free energy; scale invariant analysis of observations microdroplets; reaction rates; Gibbs free energy; scale invariant analysis of observations
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Tuck, A.F. Gibbs Free Energy and Reaction Rate Acceleration in and on Microdroplets. Entropy 2019, 21, 1044.

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