A detailed comparison of thermal ignition and nanosecond pulsed plasma assisted ignition of hydrogen-air mixtures

Suo Yang, Sharath Nagaraja, Wenting Sun, Vigor Yang

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

21 Scopus citations


The present work performs one-dimensional simulations of pulsed nanosecond plasma assisted ignition (NPI) at low pressure (80 Torr) in preheated H2-air mixtures in a plane-to-plane geometry. Thermal ignition (TI) is also studied in the same configuration by creating a hot-spot at the center of the computational domain and tracking the progress of subsequent reactions towards the boundaries. NPI requires significantly smaller minimum ignition energy (MIE) than TI due to radical production. Furthermore, NPI is essentially homogeneous while TI requires diffusion of both radicals and heat. The ignition mode of TI actually falls between homogeneous ignition (in which diffusion is not important) and flame propagation (diffusion is dominant). It is essentially consecutive auto-ignition at different locations. Large amount of radicals is first generated inside the hot-spot under high temperature. Then those radicals diffuse rapidly to other locations to trigger the auto-ignition there. From the global perspective, NPI can ignite the entire volume faster than most cases of TI except the case with very small hot-spot radius and extremely high heating temperature. For hot-spot TI, species diffusion transport is found to be as important as thermal diffusion/conduction transport at low pressure conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication53rd AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting
PublisherAmerican Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Inc, AIAA
ISBN (Print)9781624103438
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015
Externally publishedYes
Event53rd AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting, 2015 - Kissimmee, United States
Duration: Jan 5 2015Jan 9 2015

Publication series

Name53rd AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting


Other53rd AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting, 2015
Country/TerritoryUnited States


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