Control of Ice and Hydrate Nucleation

   Control of nucleation of ice and hydrates has many practical applications in the areas of power generation, oil and gas and infrastructure.

   Our recent efforts are targeted at isolating the effects of surface chemistry, fluid composition and electric fields on the nucleation kinetics of ice and methane hydrates. Our recent studies on ‘surface electrofreezing’ show that interfacial electric fields can elevate the freezing temperature by as much as 15 °C. The nucleation kinetics are also very strongly dependent on the surface chemistry and the ionic concentration of the fluid.