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Title: Revealing the molecular structure of soot precursors

Abstract

Here, the earliest stages of soot formation in flames are believed to involve the formation of small, nanoscale clusters of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon molecules. The structure of these clusters is still highly uncertain, however, impeding the construction of quantitative models of soot inception and growth. To provide insight into the structure of incipient soot, we produced nanoclusters of hydrocarbon molecules by annealing coronene films deposited on Pt(111), and examined them with scanning tunneling microcopy. We find that clusters containing ~20–100 molecules, are disordered agglomerations of stacks that are ~5–6 molecules tall. These structures are quite distinct from crystalline coronene, but bear a striking resemblance to recently proposed models for the equilibrium structure of similarly-sized clusters that are assumed to initiate soot formation. In contrast to mature soot, the surfaces of these clusters contain very few molecules with graphitic planes oriented parallel to the surface.

Authors:
 [1];  [2];  [1];  [2]
  1. Univ. of California, Irvine, CA (United States)
  2. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-CA), Livermore, CA (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-CA), Livermore, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Workforce Development for Teachers and Scientists (WDTS); USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
OSTI Identifier:
1466761
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1576054
Report Number(s):
SAND-2018-9128J
Journal ID: ISSN 0008-6223; 667132
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC04-94AL85000; NA0003525
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Carbon
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 129; Journal Issue: C; Journal ID: ISSN 0008-6223
Publisher:
Elsevier
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE

Citation Formats

Wang, Chen S., Bartelt, Norman Charles, Ragan, Regina, and Thürmer, Konrad. Revealing the molecular structure of soot precursors. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1016/j.carbon.2017.12.005.
Wang, Chen S., Bartelt, Norman Charles, Ragan, Regina, & Thürmer, Konrad. Revealing the molecular structure of soot precursors. United States. doi:10.1016/j.carbon.2017.12.005.
Wang, Chen S., Bartelt, Norman Charles, Ragan, Regina, and Thürmer, Konrad. Tue . "Revealing the molecular structure of soot precursors". United States. doi:10.1016/j.carbon.2017.12.005. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1466761.
@article{osti_1466761,
title = {Revealing the molecular structure of soot precursors},
author = {Wang, Chen S. and Bartelt, Norman Charles and Ragan, Regina and Thürmer, Konrad},
abstractNote = {Here, the earliest stages of soot formation in flames are believed to involve the formation of small, nanoscale clusters of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon molecules. The structure of these clusters is still highly uncertain, however, impeding the construction of quantitative models of soot inception and growth. To provide insight into the structure of incipient soot, we produced nanoclusters of hydrocarbon molecules by annealing coronene films deposited on Pt(111), and examined them with scanning tunneling microcopy. We find that clusters containing ~20–100 molecules, are disordered agglomerations of stacks that are ~5–6 molecules tall. These structures are quite distinct from crystalline coronene, but bear a striking resemblance to recently proposed models for the equilibrium structure of similarly-sized clusters that are assumed to initiate soot formation. In contrast to mature soot, the surfaces of these clusters contain very few molecules with graphitic planes oriented parallel to the surface.},
doi = {10.1016/j.carbon.2017.12.005},
journal = {Carbon},
number = C,
volume = 129,
place = {United States},
year = {2017},
month = {12}
}

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