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Separation Process Engineering: Includes Mass Transfer Analysis, Third Edition by Phillip C. Wankat

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15.2.1 Fick’s Law and the Definition of Diffusivity

In 1855 and 1856, physician Adolph Fick built on the previous work of Thomas Graham to develop a theory for the transfer of dilute solutes in physiological fluids. Since Fick was familiar with Fourier’s analysis of thermal conduction and since his experimental apparatus was analogous to Fourier’s apparatus, Fick modeled his theory on the analogous thermal conduction theory (Cussler, 2009). With constant density and heat capacity, Fourier had shown that for one-dimensional heat conduction with no convection and no thermal radiation,

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Defining the proportionality constant as the thermal ...

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