Recent measurements have suggested that soot properties can evolve downstream of the combustor, changing the characteristics of aviation particulate matter (PM) emissions and possibly altering the subsequent atmospheric impacts. This paper addresses the potential for the post-combustion thermodynamic environment to influence aircraft non-volatile PM emissions. Microphysical processes and interactions with gas phase species have been modeled for temperatures and pressures representative of in-service engines. Time-scale arguments are used to evaluate the relative contributions that various phenomena may make to the evolution of soot, including coagulation growth, ion-soot attachment, and vapor condensation. Then a higher-fidelity microphysics kinetic is employed to estimate the extent to which soot properties evolve as a result of these processes. Results suggest that limited opportunities exist for the modification of the size distribution of the soot, its charge distribution, or its volatile content, leading to the conclusion that the characteristics of the turbine and nozzle of an aircraft engine have little or no influence on aircraft non-volatile emissions. Combustor processing determines the properties of soot particulate matter emissions from aircraft engines, setting the stage for interactions with gaseous emissions and development as cloud condensation nuclei in the exhaust plume.

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