Humidity-dependent closing and reopening slit pores can produce hysteresis loops in sorption diagrams even at low relative vapor pressure. Pore closing is supported by adhesion of the slit wall surfaces. In a macroscopic model for sorption hysteresis in narrow slits, the adhesion energy jumps by a finite value when touching slit walls are separated from each other. We consider a more realistic adhesion model by introducing a smoothly-varying adhesion force, which depends on the distance between the slit walls. The range of the attraction between the slit walls is found to have a pronounced influence on the shape of hysteresis loops at low vapor pressure. A large interaction range avoids an extraordinarily small relative vapor pressure necessary for pore closing, which is a precondition for low pressure hysteresis. Our extended model allows us to describe a discontinuity, which can appear in the desorption branch of swelling/shrinkage diagrams for hardened cement paste.
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