Effects of Fuel Molecular Weight on Emissions in a Jet Flame and a Model Gas Turbine Combustor

Anandkumar Makwana, Suresh Iyer, Milton Linevsky, Robert Santoro, Thomas Litzinger, Jacqueline O'Connor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The objective of this study is to understand the effects of fuel volatility on soot emissions. This effect is investigated in two experimental configurations: a jet flame and a model gas turbine combustor. The jet flame provides information about the effects of fuel on the spatial development of aromatics and soot in an axisymmetric, co-flow, laminar flame. The data from the model gas turbine combustor illustrate the effect of fuel volatility on net soot production under conditions similar to an actual engine at cruise. Two fuels with different boiling points are investigated: n-heptane/n-dodecane mixture and n-hexadecane/n-dodecane mixture. The jet flames are nonpremixed and rich premixed flames in order to have fuel conditions similar to those in the primary zone of an aircraft engine combustor. The results from the jet flames indicate that the peak soot volume fraction produced in the n-hexadecane fuel is slightly higher as compared to the n-heptane fuel for both nonpremixed and premixed flames. Comparison of aromatics and soot volume fraction in nonpremixed and premixed flames shows significant differences in the spatial development of aromatics and soot along the downstream direction. The results from the model combustor indicate that, within experiment uncertainty, the net soot production is similar in both n-heptane and n-hexadecane fuel mixtures. Finally, we draw conclusions about important processes for soot formation in gas turbine combustor and what can be learned from laboratory-scale flames.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number031505
JournalJournal of Engineering for Gas Turbines and Power
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering
  • Fuel Technology
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Mechanical Engineering


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