This work aims to improve the understanding of soot particle deposition by thermophoresis. In order to show the influence of the morphology of a fractal aggregate on its thermophoretic behavior, a new experimental device has been developed; the SpectroMètre Thermophorétique Circulaire (SMTC). This instrument is used to measure the mean thermophoretic velocity of particles selected between a hot plate and a cold plate thanks to a transfer function based on the geometry of the radial flow differential mobility analyser RF-DMA or SMEC (Spectromètre de Mobilité Electrique Circulaire).
For the experimental validation, effective thermophoretic velocities of monodispersed spherical latex particles for diameters ranging from 64 nm to 500 nm and a temperature gradient equal to 50 750 K/m are measured and compared with theoretical values. The good agreement between the experimentals results and theoretical values of Beresnev and Chernyak (1995) helps us to validate the operation of the instrument. Then we compare experimental thermophoretic velocity obtained with the SMTC for spherical particles and aggregates produced by a combustion aerosol generator. Contrary to the results obtained with the PSL particles, we observe that the thermophoretic velocity of aggregates
increases with the electrical mobility diameter.
Thanks to a morphological study of the aggregates, we showed that the thermophoretic velocity depends on the number of primary particles of the aggregate. These experimental results confirm, for the first time, the theoretical data of Mackowski (2006) obtained by a Monte Carlo simulation. Moreover, a comparison with the experimental results of Messerer et al. (2003) shows that the thermophoretic velocity of aggregates seems independent of the primary particle size.