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E-Field Flames

Electric-Field Effects on Laminar Diffusion Flames (E-FIELD Flames)

Index 0clip Image0093

Image of a gas-jet diffusion flame (in air at ambient pressure) from a test conducted in NASA’s 2.2 Second Drop Tower. The flame is being forced downward by the electric field between the burner and an electrode mesh, which is at +2 kilovolts and is down-stream of the burner.

 Electric fields can strongly influence flames because of its effect on the ions present as a result of the combustion reactions. The direct ion transport and the induced ion wind can modify the flame shape, alter the soot or flammability limits, direct heat transfer, and reduce pollutant emission. The purpose of the Electric-Field Effects on Laminar Diffusion Flames (E-FIELD Flames) experiment is to gain an improved understanding of flame ion production and investigate how the ions can be used to control non-premixed flames. Outside reviewers recently concluded that the experiment “… will contribute to our critical understanding to our knowledge of combustion processes in the presence of electric fields.” The experiment will be conducted with a normal coflow flame (as in the CLD Flame experiment) or perhaps with a simple gas-jet flame, where there is no surrounding coflow. An electric field will be generated by creating a high voltage (up to 10 kV) differential between the burner and a flat circular mesh suspended above (i.e., downstream of) the burner. Measurements, as a function of field strength and fuel dilution, will be made of the ion current through the flame and the flame’s response time to electric forcing.

Project Management:

Electric-Field Effects on Laminar Diffusion Flames (E-FIELD Flames)
Principal Investigaotor: Prof. Derek Dunn-Rankin, UC Urvine

Project Scientist: Dennis Stocker, NASA Glenn Research Center

Deputy Project Scientist: Prof. Fumiaki Takahashi, Case Western Reserve University