Surface tension measurements of surface freezing in liquid normal alkanes

X. Z. Wu, B. M. Ocko, E. B. Sirota, S. K. Sinha, M. Deutsch, B. H. Cao, M. W. Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

245 Scopus citations


Surface tension measurements reveal surface freezing in liquid n-alkanes. A solid monolayer of molecules is found to exist up to 3°C above the bulk freezing point. This surface phase exists only for carbon numbers 14<n≤50. The measured carbon number and temperature dependence of the surface tension is interpreted within a simple thermodynamical model based on known bulk latent heat data and surface energy considerations. The vanishing of the surface phase for n≤14 is a possible transition from surface freezing to surface melting behavior.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1018-1021
Number of pages4
Issue number5124
StatePublished - 1993


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