Comparison of discrete, discrete-sectional, modal and moment models for aerosol dynamics simulations

Huang Zhang, Girish Sharma, Sukrant Dhawan, David Dhanraj, Zhichao Li, Pratim Biswas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


An open source software (Aerosol and Air Quality Research Lab-Aerosol Dynamics Model, AAQRL-ADM) used for aerosol dynamics simulations is developed by including four models: discrete, discrete-sectional, method of moments, and modal. First, the mathematical description of these models as well as the effects of aerosol dynamics available in the software are reviewed, and a modal model is developed to use multiple modes to represent particle size spectrum. Second, the design of a working principle and user graphical interface (GUI) of AAQRL-ADM is described. Third, the models in AAQRL-ADM are validated by investigating the evolution of particle size distribution (PSD) in considering the effects of coagulation, condensation, and nucleation. Next, the trade-off between simulation accuracy and numerical efficiency is discussed for all of the four models, and a guide to choosing the appropriate aerosol dynamic model in practical simulation is presented. Finally, discrete-sectional, moment, and modal models are used to investigate the particle size distribution in a furnace aerosol reactor along a streamline, coupled with the velocity and temperature profiles. AAQRL-ADM is provided free of charge for the use of public researchers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)739-760
Number of pages22
JournalAerosol Science and Technology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Nicole Riemer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Pollution


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