Blowoff dynamics of bluff body stabilized turbulent premixed flames

Swetaprovo Chaudhuri, Stanislav Kostka, Michael W. Renfro, Baki M. Cetegen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

227 Scopus citations


This article concerns the flame dynamics of a bluff body stabilized turbulent premixed flame as it approaches lean blowoff. Time resolved chemiluminescence imaging along with simultaneous particle image velocimetry and OH planar laser-induced fluorescence were utilized in an axisymmetric bluff body stabilized, propane-air flame to determine the sequence of events leading to blowoff and provide a quantitative analysis of the experimental results. It was found that as lean blowoff is approached by reduction of equivalence ratio, flame speed decreases and the flame shape progressively changes from a conical to a columnar shape. For a stably burning conical flame away from blowoff, the flame front envelopes the shear layer vortices. Near blowoff, the columnar flame front and shear layer vortices overlap to induce high local stretch rates that exceed the extinction stretch rates instantaneously and in the mean, resulting in local flame extinction along the shear layers. Following shear layer extinction, fresh reactants can pass through the shear layers to react within the recirculation zone with all other parts of the flame extinguished. This flame kernel within the recirculation zone may survive for a few milliseconds and can reignite the shear layers such that the entire flame is reestablished for a short period. This extinction and reignition event can happen several times before final blowoff which occurs when the flame kernel fails to reignite the shear layers and ultimately leads to total flame extinguishment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)790-802
Number of pages13
JournalCombustion and Flame
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2010


  • Blowoff and extinction
  • Bluff-body premixed flames
  • PIV
  • PLIF

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • General Physics and Astronomy


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