Image analysis and computer simulation of nanoparticle clustering in combustion systems

Y. H. Chen, S. D. Bakrania, M. S. Wooldridge, A. M. Sastry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The current work presents a new method to model and characterize the formation and growth of nanoparticles clusters which includes the three dimensional geometric properties of the clusters, such as aspect ratios, main chain length, radius of gyration, fractal dimension and fractal prefactor. In the model, semi-stochastic mathematics is used to represent varying levels of Coulomb and van der Waals forces during clustering of monodisperse particles. Parametric studies of the relative particle interactions are conducted to evaluate the effects on cluster geometry. Radius of gyration and main chain length were identified as the geometric properties with the greatest sensitivity to changes in the interparticle forces. To demonstrate the analytical capability of the approach, clusters of combustion-generated tin dioxide (SnO2) nanoparticles were imaged and evaluated to identify the dominant forces controlling cluster morphology. The results show the geometry of the SnO2 clusters is a result of strong Coulomb interactions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)83-95
Number of pages13
JournalAerosol Science and Technology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2010
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Pollution


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