Journal of Loss Prevention in The Process Industries, Vol.16, No.6, 457-478, 2003
On the determination of the laminar burning velocity from closed vessel gas explosions
A methodology to determine the laminar burning velocity from closed vessel gas explosions is explored. Unlike other methods which have been used to measure burning velocities from closed vessel explosions, this approach belongs to the category which does not involve observation of a rapidly moving flame front. Only the pressure-time curve is required as experimental input. To verify the methodology, initially quiescent methane-air mixtures were ignited in a 20-1 explosion sphere and the equivalence ratio was varied from 0.67 to 1.36. The behavior of the pressure in the vessel was measured as a function of time and two integral balance models, namely, the thin-flame and the three-zone model, were fitted to determine the laminar burning velocity. Data on the laminar burning velocity as a function of equivalence ratio, pressure and temperature, measured by a variety of other methods have been collected from the literature to enable a comparison. Empirical correlations for the effect of pressure and temperature on the laminar burning velocity have been reviewed and two were selected to be used in conjunction with the thin-flame model. For the three-zone model, a set of coupled correlations has been derived to describe the effect of pressure and temperature on the laminar burning velocity and the laminar flame thickness. Our laminar burning velocities are seen to fall within the band of data from the period 1953-2003. A comparison with recent data from the period 1994-2003 shows that our results are 5-10% higher than the laminar burning velocities which are currently believed to be the correct ones for methane-air mixtures. Based on this observation it is concluded that the methodology described in this work should only be used under circumstances where more accurate methods can not be applied. (C) 2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.