Electric Field Effects on Laminar Diffusion Flames
Nearly all combustion research has the objective of maximizing efficiency or minimizing harmful emissions. This presentation describes our studies into the use of electric fields to potentially accomplish these goals. Hydrocarbon flames have long been known to contain naturally a small quantity of charged species that allow them to act as weak plasmas. Electric fields can therefore influence these flames, including changing their shape and direction, their sooting behavior, and their ignition limits. The presentation includes findings from our laboratory studies in 1-g and new results from our experiments in microgravity on the International Space Station as part of the NASA ACME combustion studies.