Determining fractal properties of soot aggregates and primary particle size distribution in counterflow flames up to 10 atm

Hafiz Amin, Anthony Bennett, William L. Roberts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Experimental investigations of soot morphology are performed in counterflow flames of N-diluted ethylene and air, up to 10 atm. A thermophoretic sampling device is attached to a pressure vessel containing a counterflow burner where flames with an ethylene mole fraction of 0.3 are stabilized at 3, 5, and 6 atm. To allow measurements at higher pressures, the fuel mole fraction is lowered to 0.2 to reduce the soot loading and flames are studied at 5, 7, and 10 atm. Thermophoretic sampling of the soot zone is performed using TEM grids. The sampling process causes minimal flame disturbances. Soot collected on TEM grids is analyzed under transmission electron microscope (TEM). Primary particle size distributions are inferred at each pressure by manually analyzing the primary particles from TEM images. Fractal properties of soot at each pressure are also obtained by analyzing the TEM images at comparatively low magnifications. Mean primary particle diameter increases from 17.5 to 47.1 nm as the pressure is increased from 3 to 10 atm, whereas the fractal dimension and prefactor do not change with pressure up to 10 atm. For the flames studied here, fractal dimension lies between 1.61 and 1.67 whereas fractal prefactor varies between 1.68 and 1.86 without following any apparent trend with pressure.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1161-1168
Number of pages8
JournalProceedings of the Combustion Institute
Issue number1
StatePublished - Sep 12 2018

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledgements: This publication is based upon work supported by King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST). The authors would like to thank the Imaging and Characterization lab at KAUST for their assistance with the TEM analysis.


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