Experimental study of cryogen spray properties for application in dermatologic laser surgery.
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Cryogenic sprays are used for cooling human skin during laser dermatologic surgery. In this paper, six straight-tube nozzles are characterized by photographs of cryogenic spray shapes, as well as measurements of average droplet diameter, velocity, and temperature. A single-droplet evaporation model to predict average spray droplet diameter and temperature is tested using the experimental data presented here. The results show two distinct spray patterns--sprays for 1.4-mm-diameter nozzles (wide nozzles) show significantly larger average droplet diameters and higher temperatures as a function of distance from the nozzle compared with those for 0.5-0.8-mm-diameter nozzles (narrow nozzles). These results complement and support previously reported studies, indicating that wide nozzles induce more efficient heat extraction than the narrow nozzles.