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Technical Paper

Computations of Soot and NO in Lifted Flames under Diesel Conditions

In this work, computations of reacting diesel jets, including soot and NO, are carried out for a wide range of conditions by employing a RANS model in which an unsteady flamelet progress variable (UFPV) sub-model is employed to represent turbulence/chemistry interactions. Soot kinetics is represented using a chemical mechanism that models the growth of soot precursors starting from a single aromatic ring by hydrogen abstraction and carbon (acetylene) addition and NO is modeled using the kinetics from a sub-mechanism of GRI-Mech 3.0. Tracer particles are used to track the residence time of the injected mass in the jet. For the soot and NO computations, this residence time is used to track the progression of the soot and NO reactions in time. The conditions selected reflect changes in injection pressure, chamber temperature, oxygen concentration, and density, and orifice diameter.
Journal Article

Fuel-Air Mixing Characteristics of DI Hydrogen Jets

The following computational study examines the structure of sonic hydrogen jets using inlet conditions similar to those encountered in direct-injection hydrogen engines. Cases utilizing the same mass and momentum flux while varying exit-to-chamber pressure ratios have been investigated in a constant-volume computational domain. Furthermore, subsonic versus sonic structures have been compared using both hydrogen and ethylene fuel jets. Finally, the accuracy of scaling arguments to characterize an underexpanded jet by a subsonic “equivalent jet” has been assessed. It is shown that far downstream of the expansion region, the overall jet structure conforms to expectations for self-similarity in the far-field of subsonic jets. In the near-field, variations in fuel inlet-to-chamber pressure ratios are shown to influence the mixing properties of sonic hydrogen jets. In general, higher pressure ratios result in longer shock barrel length, though numerical resolution requirements increase.
Technical Paper

Thermal Interface Materials Based on Anchored Carbon Nanotubes

The new devices and missions to achieve the aims of NASA's Science Mission Directorate (SMD) are creating increasingly demanding thermal environments and applications. In particular, the low conductance of metal-to-metal interfaces used in the thermal switches lengthen the cool-down phase and resource usage for spacecraft instruments. During this work, we developed and tested a vacuum-compatible, durable, heat-conduction interface that employs carbon nanotube (CNT) arrays directly anchored on the mating metal surfaces via microwave plasma-enhanced, chemical vapor deposition (PECVD). We demonstrated that CNT-based thermal interface materials have the potential to exceed the performance of currently available options for thermal switches and other applications.
Technical Paper

Wall Interactions of Hydrogen Flames Compared with Hydrocarbon Flames

This paper provides a comparison of wall heat fluxes and quenching distances as one-dimensional hydrogen and heptane flames impinge head-on onto a wall. It is shown that the quenching distances for stoichiometric H2/air and C7H16/air flames under the specified conditions of this study are about the same, but the wall heat flux for the H2/air flames is approximately a factor of two greater. For lean H2/air mixtures, the quenching distance increases substantially and the wall heat flux decreases. To understand more clearly the interplay of flame speed, temperature, thermal diffusivity, and surface kinetics on the results, studies of H2/O2 flames are also carried out.
Technical Paper

A New Lab for Testing Biofiltration for Advanced Life Support

Bioregenerative systems for removal of gaseous contaminants are desired for long-term space missions to reduce the equivalent system mass of the air cleaning system. This paper describes an innovative design of a new biofiltration test lab for investigating the capability of biofiltration process for removal of ersatz multi-component gaseous streams representative of spacecraft contaminants released during long-term space travel. The lab setup allows a total of 24 bioreactors to receive identical inlet waste streams at stable contaminant concentrations via use of permeations ovens, needle valves, precision orifices, etc. A unique set of hardware including a Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectrometer, and a data acquisition and control system using LabVIEW™ software allows automatic, continuous, and real-time gas monitoring and data collection for the 24 bioreactors. This lab setup allows powerful factorial experimental design.
Technical Paper

Urine Processing for Water Recovery via Freeze Concentration

Resource recovery, including that of urine water extraction, is one of the most crucial aspects of long-term life support in interplanetary space travel. This paper will consequently examine an innovative approach to processing raw, undiluted urine based on low-temperature freezing. This strategy is uniquely different from NASA's current emphasis on either ‘integrated’ (co-treatment of mixed urine, grey, and condensate waters) or ‘high-temperature’ (i.e., VCD [vapor compression distillation] or VPCAR [vapor phase catalytic ammonia removal]) processing strategies, whereby this liquid freeze-thaw (LiFT) procedure would avoid both chemical and microbial cross-contamination concerns while at the same time securing highly desirable reductions in likely ESM levels.
Technical Paper

Influence of Wall Impingement on the Structure of Reacting Jets

In Diesel engines, the vapor phase of the fuel jet is known to impinge on the walls. This impingement is likely to have an effect on mixing characteristics, the structure of the diffusion flame and on pollutant formation and oxidation. These effects have not been studied in detail in the literature. In this work, the structure of a laminar wall jet that is generated from the impingement of a free laminar jet on a wall is discussed. We study the laminar jet with the belief that the local structure of the reaction zone in the turbulent reacting jet is that of a laminar flame. Results from non-reacting and reacting jets will be presented. In the case of the non-reacting jets, the focus of the inquiry is on assessing the accuracy of the computed results by comparing them with analytical results. Velocity profiles in the wall jet, growth rates of the half-width of the jet and penetration rates are presented.
Technical Paper

The Computed Structure of a Combusting Transient Jet Under Diesel Conditions

Numerical computations of combusting transient jets are performed under diesel-like conditions. Discussions of the structure of such jets are presented from global and detailed points of view. From a global point of view, we show that the computed flame heights agree with deductions from theory and that integrated soot mass and heat release rates are consistent with expected trends. We present results of several paramaters which characterise the details of the jet structure. These are fuel mass fractions, temperature, heat release rates, soot and NO. Some of these parameters are compared with the structure of a combusting diesel spray as deduced from measurements and reported in the literature. The heat release rate contours show that the region of chemical reactions is confined to a thin sheet as expected for a diffusion flame. The soot contour plots appear to agree qualitatively with the experimental observations.