Combustion of bimodal nano/micron-sized aluminum particle dust in air

Ying Huang, Grant A. Risha, Vigor Yang, Richard A. Yetter

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

192 Scopus citations


The combustion of bimodal nano/micron-sized aluminum particles with air is studied both analytically and experimentally in a well-characterized laminar particle-laden flow. Experimentally, an apparatus capable of producing Bunsen-type premixed flames was constructed to investigate the flame characteristics of bimodal-particle/air mixtures. The flame speed is positively affected by increasing the mass fraction of nano particles in the fuel formulation despite the lower flame luminosity and thicker flame zone. Theoretically, the flames are assumed to consist of several different regimes for fuel-lean mixture, including the preheat, flame, and post flame zones. The flame speed and temperature distribution are derived by solving the energy equation in each regime and matching the temperature and heat flux at the interfacial boundaries. The analysis allows for the investigation of the effects of particle composition and equivalence ratio on the burning characteristics of aluminum-particle/air mixtures. Reasonable agreement between theoretical results and experimental data was obtained in terms of flame speed. The flame structure of a bimodal particle dust cloud may display either an overlapping or a separated configuration, depending on the combustion properties of aluminum particles at different scales. At low percentages of nano particles in the fuel formulation, the flame exhibits a separated spatial structure with a wider flame regime. At higher nano-particle loadings, overlapping flame configurations are observed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2001-2009
Number of pages9
JournalProceedings of the Combustion Institute
Volume31 II
StatePublished - 2007
Event31st International Symposium on Combustion - Heidelberg, Germany
Duration: Aug 5 2006Aug 11 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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