A thermodynamic study of one component liquid–vapor planar interfaces and the temperature dependence of some relevant thermodynamic quantities is presented. A critical review of data for the surface tension of water found in some textbooks is given. More accurate measurements show a qualitative change in the temperature dependence of the surface tension, from the almost linear dependence of the old data to nonlinear behavior and the occurrence of an inflection point in the more accurate, more recent data.

1.
J.
Pellicer
,
J. A.
Manzanares
, and
S.
Mafé
, “
The physical description of elementary surface phenomena: Thermodynamics versus mechanics
,”
Am. J. Phys.
63
,
542
547
(
1995
).
2.
H. B. Callen, Thermodynamics (Wiley, New York, 1960), p. 98.
3.
A. W. Adamson, Physical Chemistry of Surfaces (Wiley, New York, 1982), 4th ed., p. 51 and pp. 70–78.
4.
J. Lyklema, Liquid-Fluid Interfaces in Fundamentals of Interface and Colloid Science (Academic, London, 2000), Vol. III, Chap. 1.
5.
M. W. Zemansky, Heat and Thermodynamics (McGraw–Hill, New York, 1943), 2nd ed., Sec. 14.7; (1957), 4th ed., Sec. 14.5; (1968), 5th ed., Sec. 13.2.
6.
G. Bruhat, Thermodynamique (Masson, Paris, 1962), 5th ed., Sec. 121.
7.
J. E. Lay, Thermodynamics (Merrill, Columbus, OH, 1963), Sec. 21.4.
8.
F. W. Sears and G. L. Salinger, Thermodynamics, Kinetic Theory, and Statistical Mechanics (Addison–Wesley, Reading, MA, 1976), 3rd ed., Sec. 8.4.
9.
J. Aguilar, Curso de Termodinámica (Alhambra, Madrid, 1981), Sec. 19.6; (1984), 2nd ed., Sec. 19.6; (1989), 3rd ed., Sec. 19.6; (Longman, Madrid, 1998), 4th ed., Sec. 19.6.
10.
D. C.
Agrawal
and
V. J.
Menon
, “
Surface tension and evaporation: An empirical relation for water
,”
Phys. Rev. A
46
,
2166
2169
(
1992
).
11.
D. Tabor, Gases, Liquids and Solids and Other States of Matter (Cambridge U.P., Cambridge, 1993), 3rd ed., p. 282.
12.
M. W. Zemansky and R. H. Dittman, Heat and Thermodynamics (McGraw–Hill, New York, 1981), 6th ed., Sec. 17.2; (1997), 7th ed.
13.
C. Wagner, Phenomenal and Thermodynamic Equations of Adsorption (Nachrichten der Akademie der Wissenschaften in Gttingen, II. Mathematisch-Physikalische Klasse, 1973), p. 37.
This content is only available via PDF.
AAPT members receive access to the American Journal of Physics and The Physics Teacher as a member benefit. To learn more about this member benefit and becoming an AAPT member, visit the Joining AAPT page.