Flame acceleration and transition from deflagration to detonation in hydrogen explosions

Heidari, Ali and Wen, Jennifer (2014) Flame acceleration and transition from deflagration to detonation in hydrogen explosions. International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, 39(11), pp. 6184-6200. ISSN (print) 0360-3199


Computational Fluid Dynamics solvers are developed for explosion modelling and hazards analysis in Hydrogen air mixtures. The work is presented in two parts. These include firstly a numerical approach to simulate flame acceleration and deflagration to detonation transition (DDT) in hydrogen–air mixture and the second part presents comparisons between two approaches to detonation modelling. The detonation models are coded and the predictions in identical scenarios are compared. The DDT model which is presented here solves fully compressible, multidimensional, transient, reactive Navier–Stokes equations with a chemical reaction mechanism for different stages of flame propagation and acceleration from a laminar flame to a highly turbulent flame and subsequent transition from deflagration to detonation. The model has been used to simulate flame acceleration (FA) and DDT in a 2-D symmetric rectangular channel with 0.04 m height and 1 m length which is filled with obstacles. Comparison has been made between the predictions using a 21-step detailed chemistry as well as a single step reaction mechanism. The effect of initial temperature on the run-up distances to DDT has also been investigated. In the second part, one detonation solver is developed based on the solution of the reactive Euler equations while the other solver has a simpler approach based on Chapman–Jouguet model and the programmed CJ burn method. Comparison has shown that the relatively simple CJ burn approach is unable to capture some very important features of detonation when there are obstacles present in the cloud.

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