Soot properties of laminar jet diffusion flames in microgravity

F. J. Diez, C. Aalburg, P. B. Sunderland, D. L. Urban, Z. G. Yuan, G. M. Faeth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


The soot properties of round, non-buoyant, laminar jet diffusion flames are described, based on experiments carried out in microgravity conditions during three flights of the Space Shuttle Columbia (Flights STS-83, 94 and 107). Experimental conditions included ethylene- and propane-fueled flames burning in still air at an ambient temperature of 298 K and ambient pressures of 35-100 kPa. Measurements included soot volume fraction distributions using deconvolved laser extinction imaging and soot temperature distributions using deconvolved multiline emission imaging. Mixture fractions were estimated from the temperature measurements. Flow field modeling based on the work of Spalding is presented. It is shown that most of the volume of these flames is inside the dividing streamline and thus should follow residence time state relationships. Most streamlines from the fuel supply to the surroundings exhibit nearly the same maximum soot volume fraction and maximum temperature. The present work studies whether soot properties of these flames are universal functions of mixture fraction, i.e., whether they satisfy soot state relationships. Soot state relationships were observed, i.e., soot volume fraction was found to correlate reasonably well with estimated mixture fraction for each fuel/pressure selection. These results support the existence of soot property state relationships in steady non-buoyant laminar diffusion flames, and thus in a large class of practical turbulent diffusion flames through the application of the laminar flamelet concept.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1514-1524
Number of pages11
JournalCombustion and Flame
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • General Physics and Astronomy


  • Laminar flamelets
  • Non-buoyant flames
  • Non-premixed flames
  • Soot


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