Tethered methanol droplet combustion in carbon-dioxide enriched environment under microgravity conditions
Abstract Tethered methanol droplet combustion in carbon dioxide enriched environment is simulated using a transient one-dimensional spherosymmetric droplet combustion model that includes the effects of tethering. A priori numerical predictions are compared against recent experimental data. The numerical predictions compare favorably with the experimental results and show significant effects of tethering on the experimental observations. The presence of a relatively large quartz fiber tether increases the burning rate significantly and hence decreases the extinction diameter. The simulations further show that the extinction diameter depends on both the initial droplet diameter and the ambient concentration of carbon dioxide. Increasing the droplet diameter and ambient carbon dioxide concentration both of them lead to a decrease in the burning rate and increase in the extinction diameter. The influence of ambient carbon dioxide concentration on extinction shows a sharp transition in extinction for larger size droplets ( d o > 1.5 mm) due to a change in the mode of extinction from diffusive to radiative control. In addition predictions from the numerical model is compared against a recently developed simplified theoretical model for predicting extinction diameter for methanol droplets, where the presence and heat transfer contribution of the tether is not taken into account implicitly. The numerical results suggest some limitation in the theoretical modeling assumptions for favorable comparisons with the experimental data.