New Approach to Moisture Accumulation Assessment

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Moisture accumulation, Simulation, Particle physics, Molecular dynamics, Environmental testing

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Daniel Felix Ritchie School of Engineering and Computer Science, Mechanical and Materials Engineering


We suggest an innovative approach to simulate moisture buildup on structures with arbitrary geometries and different surface adhesion characteristics. Using 3D particle physics, rain, snow and freezing rain buildup on flat and cylindrical surfaces was assessed. The numerically simulated moisture accumulations were subsequently successfully verified experimentally through a series of outdoor and indoor moisture accumulation experiments. We also conducted molecular dynamics simulations to assess how hydrogen bonds influence snow and rain adhesion on high and low energy substrates. The simulations supported the experimental observations, namely that freezing rain results in increased moisture adhesion and accumulation due to the spreading of the water droplets, resulting in more hydrogen bonds between water droplets and substrates than snow.

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