Description of Gaseous Diffusion Coefficient Apparatus
A small quantity of the volatile liquid to be investigated is placed in a capillary tube, which is positioned in a heated metal block. The block is heated by an electric cartridge heater and kept at a constant temperature using an electronic control loop.
A stream of air is passed across the top of the capillary tube, with a stationary layer of air above the liquid surface, creating a partial pressure difference between the liquid surface and the flowing air stream. As vapour diffuses from the liquid into the air stream, the amount of liquid in the tube reduces and the phase boundary between the liquid and the air drops. Measurement of how this phase boundary changes with time enables the molar mass transfer rate to be determined.