Jan V. Sengers, Distinguished University Professor Emeritus of the University of Maryland’s Institute for Physical Science & Technology, has developed a theory for use in the new International Formulation for the Thermal Conductivity of Water, announced in January 2012. This formulation, along with formulations for the transport properties and viscosity of water, are established by the International Association for the Properties of Water and Steam (IAPWS) and published through the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME , for industrial use) and the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST, for scientific use). Sengers’ theory expresses the thermal conductivity of supercritical water (water at temperatures above 647 K) while accounting for fluctuations due to the vapor-liquid transition of high-temperature water.

Prof. Sengers, who holds a joint appointment with the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, has been involved in related thermodynamic research for decades, having served 35 years ago on the last revision committee for the formulation for transport properties. Sengers was also directly involved in the most recent revision of the transport property standards, collaborating with scientists from the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) in Boulder, CO. While the revised standards will eventually be released in the Third Edition of ASME’s International Steam Tables for Industrial Use, IAPWS, NIST, and ASME will also provide them through other formats, including conferences, websites, software, and publications.

For more information on Prof. Sengers, visit his faculty page . The IAPWS website can be accessed here.

February 24, 2012

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