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Vapor Pressure Measurements on Low-Volatility Terpenoid Compounds by the Concatenated Gas Saturation Method



Jason A. Widegren, Thomas J. Bruno


The atmospheric oxidation of monoterpenes plays a central role in the formation of secondary organic aerosols (SAOs), which have important effects on the weather and climate. However, models of SAO formation have large uncertainties. One reason for this is that SAO formation depends directly on the vapor pressures of the monoterpene oxidation products, but few vapor pressures have been reported for these compounds. As a result, models of SAO formation have had to rely on estimated values of vapor pressure. To alleviate this problem, we have developed the concatenated gas saturation method, which is a simple, reliable, high-throughput method for measuring the vapor pressures of low-volatility compounds. The concatenated gas saturation method represents a significant advance over traditional gas saturation methods. Instead of a single saturator and trap, the concatenated method uses several pairs of saturators and traps linked in series. Consequently, several measurements of vapor pressure can be made simultaneously, which greatly increases the rate of data collection. It also allows for the simultaneous measurement of a control compound, which is important for ensuring data quality. In this paper we demonstrate the use of the concatenated gas saturation method by determination of the vapor pressures of five monoterpene oxidation products and n-tetradecane (the control compound) over the temperature range 283.15 K to 313.15 K. Over this temperature range, the vapor pressures ranged from about 0.5 Pa to about 70 Pa. The standard molar enthalpies of vaporization or sublimation were determined using the Clausius-Clapeyron equation.
Environmental Science & Technology


concatenated gas saturation technique, enthalpy of sublimation, enthalpy of vaporization, monoterpene, monoterpenoid, n-tetradecane, secondary organic aerosol former, terpenoid, transpiration method, vapor pressure, (+)-carvone, (1S, 2S, 5S)-(-)-2-hydroxy-3-pinanone, (1R, 2R, 3R, 5S)-(-)-isopinocampheol, (+)-trans-myrtanol, (-)-trans-pinocarveol


Widegren, J. and Bruno, T. (2010), Vapor Pressure Measurements on Low-Volatility Terpenoid Compounds by the Concatenated Gas Saturation Method, Environmental Science & Technology, [online], (Accessed April 14, 2024)
Created January 1, 2010, Updated June 2, 2021