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Current Projects

  • Hydrate combustion: hydrates are ice-like solids containing caged gas molecules.  Methane hydrates are a prevalent naturally occuring compound in the deep ocean and the permafrost.  This project examines the burning behavior of these hydrates, a process that includes dissociation of the solid to liquid water and gas, and the subsequent burning of the gas in a surrounding flame.

  • Electrical aspects of microgravity combustion: examines various uses of electric fields relevant to flames in zero-g conditions; includes fire suppression, control of the local buoyancy field, and real-time flame manipulation.
  • Optical particle sizing: techniques to measure the size of airborne droplets and particles using laser light scattering, holography, and direct photograpy.  Current application is to cookstove smoke and measurements using time-gated holography for probing optically dense systems.
  • Single cylinder SI engine (50 cc): small engines are responsible for the majority of transport in the world and these engines are notorious for their relatively high emission levels.  This project is to explore advanced combustion approaches (such as HCCI) for implementation in small single cylinder engines.
  • Stored energy solar stove: typical solar cooking requires sunlight, a limitation that prevents solar stoves from useful evening and early morning meal preparations around the world.  This project examines the potential for molten salt phase change to store sufficient solar thermal flux for stove use after sunset and before sunrise.
  • Laser spectroscopy for high pressure combustion diagnostics: application of coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS), laser induced incandescence (LII), absorption, and laser induced fluorescence (LIF), for measuring temperature and species concentrations in combustion environments.

   
 
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