Simultaneous ion and neutral evaporation in aqueous nanodrops: Experiment, theory, and molecular dynamics simulations

Hidenori Higashi, Takuya Tokumi, Christopher J. Hogan, Hiroshi Suda, Takafumi Seto, Yoshio Otani

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Abstract

We use a combination of tandem ion mobility spectrometry (IMS-IMS, with differential mobility analyzers), molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, and analytical models to examine both neutral solvent (H2O) and ion (solvated Na+) evaporation from aqueous sodium chloride nanodrops. For experiments, nanodrops were produced via electrospray ionization (ESI) of an aqueous sodium chloride solution. Two nanodrops were examined in MD simulations: a 2500 water molecule nanodrop with 68 Na+ and 60 Cl- ions (an initial net charge of z = +8), and (2) a 1000 water molecule nanodrop with 65 Na+ and 60 Cl- ions (an initial net charge of z = +5). Specifically, we used MD simulations to examine the validity of a model for the neutral evaporation rate incorporating both the Kelvin (surface curvature) and Thomson (electrostatic) influences, while both MD simulations and experimental measurements were compared to predictions of the ion evaporation rate equation of Labowsky et al. [Anal. Chim. Acta, 2000, 406, 105-118]. Within a single fit parameter, we find excellent agreement between simulated and modeled neutral evaporation rates for nanodrops with solute volume fractions below 0.30. Similarly, MD simulation inferred ion evaporation rates are in excellent agreement with predictions based on the Labowsky et al. equation. Measurements of the sizes and charge states of ESI generated NaCl clusters suggest that the charge states of these clusters are governed by ion evaporation, however, ion evaporation appears to have occurred with lower activation energies in experiments than was anticipated based on analytical calculations as well as MD simulations. Several possible reasons for this discrepancy are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)15746-15755
Number of pages10
JournalPhysical Chemistry Chemical Physics
Volume17
Issue number24
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 28 2015

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