Numerical simulation analysis of flow patterns and particle transport in the HEAD laser ablation cell with respect to inductively coupled plasma spectrometry
Faculty of Sciences. Chemistry
Journal of analytical atomic spectrometry. - London
, p. 295-304
University of Antwerp
The present study analyses a specific laser ablation cell, the High Efficiency Aerosol Dispersion (HEAD) cell (see J. Pisonero et al., J. Anal. At. Spectrom., 2006, 21, 922931), by means of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations. However, this cell consists of different modular parts, therefore, the results are probably of interest for the further development of other ablation cells. In the HEAD cell, the ablation spot is positioned below an orifice in the ceiling of the sample chamber. The particle transport through this orifice has been analysed for a ceiling height of 0.8 mm. The critical velocity for the onset of particle losses was found to be independent on the ejection angle at the crater spot. The deceleration of the particles can be described as the stopping in an effectively steady gas. Particle losses were negligible in this modular part of the cell at the evaluated laser ablation conditions. The transport efficiency through the Venturi chamber was investigated for different sample gas flow rates. In this case, it was found that small particles were predominantly lost at low flow rates, the large particles at higher flow rates. Making use of the simulation results, it was possible to design a modification of the HEAD cell that results in extremely short calculated washout times. The simulations yielded a signal of less than 10 ms, which was produced by more than 99% of the introduced mass.