Transported probability density function based modelling of soot particle size distributions in non-premixed turbulent jet flames

M. A. Schiener, R. P. Lindstedt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


The need to establish actual particle size distributions (PSDs) of soot emissions from the nanoscale upwards, along with the current global indicators based on soot mass, stems from increasingly strict regulatory demands. In the current work, a mass and number density preserving sectional model is coupled with a transported probability density function (PDF) method to study the evolution of soot PSDs in two non-premixed turbulent jet flames at Reynolds numbers of 10,000 and 20,000. The transported PDF approach is closed at joint-scalar level and includes mass fractions of gas phase species, soot sections, as well as enthalpy, leading to a fully coupled 78-dimensional joint-scalar space, treating interactions between turbulence and gas phase/soot chemistry as well as radiation without further approximation. The gas phase chemistry features 144 reactions, 15 solved and 14 steady-state species and an acetylene-based soot inception model is calibrated using comprehensive detailed chemistry up to pyrene and applied to a well-stirred/plug flow reactor configuration. The derived nucleation rate is subsequently applied in the turbulent flame calculations. Soot surface growth is treated via a PAH analogy and oxidation via O, OH and O2 is accounted for. The sectional model features 62 sections covering particle sizes in the range 0.38 nm  ≤ dp ≤ 4.4 µm and includes a model for the collision efficiency of small particles ( ≤ 10 nm) based on the Lennard–Jones potential. The computed results reproduce the evolution of the PSDs with encouraging accuracy. It is also shown that the distribution of soot in mixture fraction space is affected by local extinction events.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1049-1056
Number of pages8
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 25 2019
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2022-06-07
Acknowledgements: The authors wish to gratefully acknowledge the support of the European Union under the SOPRANO H2020 project award 690724. The data provided by Wesley Boyette and Professor William Roberts from the Clean Combustion Centre at KAUST is gratefully acknowledged.
This publication acknowledges KAUST support, but has no KAUST affiliated authors.


Dive into the research topics of 'Transported probability density function based modelling of soot particle size distributions in non-premixed turbulent jet flames'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this