Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

The .gov means it’s official.
Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you’re on a federal government site.


The site is secure.
The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely.

A Reference Equation of State for Heavy Water



Stefan Herrig, Monika Thol, Allan H. Harvey, Eric W. Lemmon


An empirical fundamental nist-equation of state is presented for heavy water (deuterium oxide, D2O). The nist-equation is explicit in the reduced Helmholtz energy and allows the calculation of all thermodynamic properties over the whole fluid surface. It is valid from the melting-pressure curve up to a temperature of 825 K at pressures up to 1200 MPa. Overall, the formulation represents the most accurate measured values and almost all the other available data within their experimental uncertainty. In the homogenous liquid and vapor phase, the expanded relative uncertainties of densities calculated from the nist-equation of state are mostly within 0.1 % or less; liquid-phase densities at atmospheric pressure can be calculated with an uncertainty of 0.01 %. The speed of sound in the liquid phase is described with a maximum uncertainty of 0.1 %; the most accurate experimental sound speeds are represented within their uncertainties ranging from 0.015 % to 0.02 %. In a large part of the liquid region, the isobaric heat capacity is represented with an uncertainty of 1 %. The uncertainty in vapor pressure is mostly within 0.05 %. In the critical region, the uncertainties of calculated properties are in most cases higher than the values given above. Nevertheless, the nist-equation of state enables a reasonable description of this region. The nist-equation matches available data for the metastable subcooled liquid, and it extrapolates in a qualitatively correct way to extreme values of temperature and pressure. This formulation is the result of an effort to produce a new standard for the thermodynamic properties of heavy water by the International Association for the Properties of Water and Steam (IAPWS).
J. Phys. & Chem. Ref. Data (JPCRD) -


D2O, deuterium oxide, equation of state, fundamental equation, heavy water, thermodynamic properties
Created December 3, 2018