Chemiluminescence signature of premixed ammonia-methane-air flames

Xuren Zhu, Abdulrahman A. Khateeb, William L. Roberts, Thibault Guiberti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


This paper reports on the chemiluminescence footprint of premixed ammonia-methane-air flames. The chemiluminescence spectrum of laminar twin-flames stabilized with a counterflow burner were measured between 200 and 457 nm for large ranges of equivalence ratio (0.60 ≤ ϕ ≤ 1.30), ammonia fraction (pure methane to pure ammonia), and strain rate (55/s ≤ a ≤ 300/s). Relevant excited radicals were identified, namely, NO*, OH*, NH*, CN*, CH*, and CO2* and evolutions of their chemiluminescence intensity were analyzed as a function of equivalence ratio, ammonia fraction, and strain rate. These measurements produced an unprecedented database on the chemiluminescence of ammonia-methane-air flames, which could be used in the future for model validation. A total of 15 ratios of chemiluminescence intensity were also considered and 5 ratios showing promise for the development of chemiluminescence-based flame sensors were identified. The CN*/OH* ratio is a potential surrogate for equivalence ratio even if the ammonia fuel fraction in the fuel blend is not known accurately – as long as it exceeds 0.3 by volume. The CN*/NO* ratio is another possible surrogate for equivalence ratio if the ammonia fraction in the fuel blend is below 0.5. The OH*/CH* ratio, often used to sense equivalence ratio in hydrocarbons flames, is not recommended for ammonia-methane flames. The NH*/CN* ratio is a potential surrogate for the ammonia fraction in the fuel blend if equivalence ratio is larger than ϕ = 0.7 and if the ammonia fraction in the fuel blend is below 0.4. Other ratios may be combined to provide a simultaneous measure of equivalence ratio and ammonia fraction in the fuel blend with an extended range of validity, for example NH*/OH* and CN*/NH*.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)111508
JournalCombustion and Flame
StatePublished - Jun 7 2021

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2021-06-09
Acknowledged KAUST grant number(s): BAS/1/1370-01-01
Acknowledgements: The research reported in this publication was supported by funding from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) under grant number BAS/1/1370-01-01. We thank Prof. G. Magnotti from KAUST for his contribution to the burner design.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Fuel Technology


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