Water Condensation: A Multiscale Phenomenon

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The condensation of water is a phenomenon occurring in multiple situations in everyday life, e.g., when fog is formed or when dew forms on the grass or on windows. This means that this phenomenon plays an important role within the different fields of science including meteorology, building physics, and chemistry. In this review we address condensation models and simulations with the main focus on heterogeneous condensation of water. The condensation process is, at first, described from a thermodynamic viewpoint where the nucleation step is described by the classical nucleation theory. Further, we address the shortcomings of the thermodynamic theory in describing the nucleation and emphasize the importance of nanoscale effects. This leads to the description of condensation from a molecular viewpoint. Also presented is how the nucleation can be simulated
by use of molecular models, and how the condensation process is simulated on the macroscale using computational fluid dynamics. Finally, examples of hybrid models combining molecular and macroscale models for the simulation of condensation on a surface are presented.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)1859-1871
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Water Condensation
  • Heterogeneous Nucleation
  • Hydrophilicity/Hydrophobicity
  • Thermodynamics of Water Condensation
  • Water Condensation Modelling


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