SLICE was conducted on the International Space Station in early 2012 to prepare for ACME’s Coflow Laminar Diffusion Flame (CLD Flame) experiment. CLD Flame is led by Yale professors Marshall Long and Mitch Smooke, whose combined experimental and computational research (including SLICE) is described in the 2012 Yale Engineering magazine’s cover story. Two ACME posters will also be presented at the symposium:
Finally, an updated list of ACME Publications and Presentations is now available online.
ACME NUMBERS: 3, 5, 8, 11
ACME Experiments (listed alphabetically)
Burning Rate Emulator (BRE)
Coflow Laminar Diffusion Flame (CLD Flame)
Electric-Field Effects on Laminar Diffusion Flames (E-FIELD Flames)
Structure and Response of Spherical Diffusion Flames (s-Flame)
ACME BENEFITS & RELEVANCE
Why study combustion?
Awards and Recognitions:
Best Thesis Award – Undergraduate student Laurel Paxton received the Morgan McKinzie Prize for the best senior thesis from Princeton’s Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. The thesis research, “Weakly buoyant spherical diffusion flames: properties of hydrogen-CO/ethylene flames,” is in support of the Structure and Response of Spherical Diffusion Flames (s-Flame) experiment which will be conducted on the International Space Station as part of the Advanced Combustion via Microgravity Experiments (ACME) project. Her advisor, Prof. C.K. Law, is the s-Flame Principal Investigator.
April 2014 –Since Feb. 2013, over 30 tests have been conducted for the ACME project in the Zero Gravity Research Facility at the NASA Glenn Research Center (GRC). During this same period, over 200 ACME tests were conducted in NASA Glenn’s 2.2 Second Drop Tower, where much of that testing was carried out by NASA interns who were either undergraduate students or recent graduates. The drop tests were primarily conducted to evaluate (1) prototype burners fabricated by U. Maryland, Princeton U., and Yale U.; and (2) signal levels with flight-like instrumentation and cameras, e.g., in order to determine appropriate amplification and settings. The Requirements Definition Review (RDR) for the Burning Rate Emulator (BRE) experiment was held in June 2013, for which its Science Requirements Document (SRD) was updated. The BRE RDR was accompanied (on the next day) by a delta Preliminary Design Review (PDR) for ACME. In this regard, BRE was a late addition to ACME, where ACME’s RDR and PDR had been previously held (i.e., for the four initial experiments) in 2010 and 2011, respectively. The requirement changes from BRE’s RDR were fully incorporated into ACME’s Integrated Science Requirements Document (ISRD) in preparation for ACME’s Critical Design Review (CDR), which was held in November 2013. At this time, it is projected that ACME will operate on the International Space Station (ISS) from 2016 to 2019. Overviews of the ACME project were presented at the meetings of the American Society for Gravitational and Space Research (ASGSR) and the Central States Section of The Combustion Institute (CSS/CI) in November 2013 and March 2014, respectively. The paper and presentation for the latter conference are now available online.
Feb. 2013 – Preparations are underway to conduct evaluation tests for the Burning Rate Emulator (BRE) experiment in NASA Glenn’s Zero Gravity Research Facility using a prototype burner developed by the University of Maryland investigators, Profs. Jim Quintiere and Peter Sunderland. This follows forty exploratory tests that were conducted with a similar gas-fueled burner in November 2012 in NASA Glenn’s 2.2 Second Drop Tower. In each drop facility, apparent weightlessness is momentarily achieved by letting the self-contained experiment freely fall down a vertical shaft. The November tests were conducted in ambient air and sometimes revealed lifting phenomena and possible tip quenching when the fuel was methane or diluted methane. Meanwhile, the ethylene flames remained robust throughout the 2.2-second test duration. The “cup” burner used in the November tests was equipped with a heater, where its use had a significant effect on the ethylene flame as can be seen in the sample images below.
October 2012 – Detailed design is underway, where ACME passed an interim design review in June. A successful Science Concept Review was held for the Burning Rate Emulator (BRE) experiment in August, where the external reviewers concluded that BRE “may offer critical guidance in flammability assessment in space vehicles.” The Requirements Definition Review for BRE and the Critical Design Review for ACME are planned for June and November 2013, respectively. The extra reviews are necessary for BRE because it wasn’t originally an ACME experiment and its design isn’t yet fully specified. It is currently expected that ACME will begin testing on ISS in 2016.
April 2012 – Tests were recently completed on the International Space Station for the Structure & Liftoff In Combustion Experiment (SLICE) which is a precursor to ACME’s Coflow Laminar Diffusion Flame (CLD Flame) experiment. The SLICE results will enable refinement of the CLD Flame test matrix and operating procedures so as to maximize its scientific outcome. You can learn more about SLICE at its Facebook page.
January 2012 – A fifth experiment was added to the ACME project, Burning Rate Emulator (BRE), where the investigators are Profs. J.G. Quintiere and P.B. Sunderland of the University of Maryland. BRE’s objective is to improve our fundamental understanding of materials flammability and assess the relevance of existing flammability test methods for low and partial-gravity environments. The burning of solid and liquid fuels will be simulated using a flat porous burner, where the flow rate of gaseous fuel will be controlled based on the thermal feedback to the burner.
January 2011 - The Advanced Combustion via Microgravity Experiments (ACME) Preliminary Design Review (PDR) was held on January 28, 2011. The Project team demonstrated that the preliminary design meets all system requirements with acceptable risk and within cost and schedule constraints. The review board has recommended that the project proceed with detailed design.
May 2010 - The Advanced Combustion via Microgravity Experiments (ACME) Requirements Definition Review (RDR) was held for two days, May 10-11, 2010 The Science Requirements Document (SRD) was signed by all parties except for one PI who had to leave early before the signature page was prepared.