Y. Wang, S.H. Chung
Combust. Flame, 161, 1224-1234, (2014)
Counterflow diffusion flame, Sooting limit, Strain rate, Sooting temperature index (STI), Sooting sensitivity index (SSI)
The effect of the strain rate on the sooting limits in counterflow diffusion flames was investigated in various gaseous hydrocarbon fuels by varying the nitrogen dilution in the fuel and oxidizer streams. The sooting limit was defined as the critical fuel and oxygen mole fraction at which soot started to appear in the elastic light scattering signal. The sooting region for normal alkane fuels at a specified strain rate, in terms of the fuel and oxygen mole fraction, expanded as the number of carbon atoms increased. The alkene fuels (ethylene, propene) tested had a higher propensity for sooting as compared with alkane fuels with the same carbon numbers (ethane, propane). Branched iso-butane had a higher propensity for sooting than did n-butane. An increase in the strain rate reduced the tendency for sooting in all the fuels tested. The sensitivity of the sooting limit to the strain rate was more pronounced for less sooting fuels. When plotted in terms of calculated flame temperature, the critical oxygen mole fraction exhibited an Arrhenius form under sooting limit conditions, which can be utilized to significantly reduce the effort required to determine sooting limits at different strain rates. We found that the limiting temperatures of soot formation flames are viable sooting metrics for quantitatively rating the sooting tendency of various fuels, based on comparisons with threshold soot index and normalized smoke point data. We also introduce a sooting temperature index and a sooting sensitivity index, two quantitative measures to describe sooting propensity and its dependence on strain rate.