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embryo

Also contains definitions of: critical embryo, homogeneous nucleus

An aggregate of a small number of atoms, molecules or ions. An embryo of such a size that the Gibbs energy at constant pressure and temperature is a maximum is called a critical embryo. An embryo larger than a critical embryo is called a homogeneous nucleus. Colloidal sols may be formed by condensation methods. When a condensation method is applied, molecules (or ions) are deposited on nuclei which may be of the same chemical species as the colloid (homogeneous nucleation) or different (heterogeneous nucleation).
Source:
PAC, 1972, 31, 577 (Manual of Symbols and Terminology for Physicochemical Quantities and Units, Appendix II: Definitions, Terminology and Symbols in Colloid and Surface Chemistry) on page 608
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IUPAC. Compendium of Chemical Terminology, 2nd ed. (the "Gold Book"). Compiled by A. D. McNaught and A. Wilkinson. Blackwell Scientific Publications, Oxford (1997). XML on-line corrected version: http://goldbook.iupac.org (2006-) created by M. Nic, J. Jirat, B. Kosata; updates compiled by A. Jenkins. ISBN 0-9678550-9-8. doi:10.1351/goldbook.
Last update: 2014-02-24; version: 2.3.3.
DOI of this term: doi:10.1351/goldbook.E02055.
Original PDF version: http://www.iupac.org/goldbook/E02055.pdf. The PDF version is out of date and is provided for reference purposes only. For some entries, the PDF version may be unavailable.
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