## Abstract

We present a rigorous thermodynamic treatment of irreversible binary aggregation. We construct the Smoluchowski ensemble as the set of discrete finite distributions that are reached in fixed number of merging events and define a probability measure on this ensemble, such that the mean distribution in the mean-field approximation is governed by the Smoluchowski equation. In the scaling limit this ensemble gives rise to a set of relationships identical to those of familiar statistical thermodynamics. The central element of the thermodynamic treatment is the selection functional, a functional of feasible distributions that connects the probability of distribution to the details of the aggregation model. We obtain scaling expressions for general kernels and closed-form results for the special case of the constant, sum and product kernel. We study the stability of the most probable distribution, provide criteria for the sol-gel transition and obtain the distribution in the post-gel region by simple thermodynamic arguments.

Original language | English (US) |
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Article number | 1181 |

Pages (from-to) | 1-26 |

Number of pages | 26 |

Journal | Entropy |

Volume | 22 |

Issue number | 10 |

DOIs | |

State | Published - Oct 2020 |

## All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

- Physics and Astronomy(all)