Effect of applied DC electric fields in flame spread over polyethylene-coated electrical wire
KAUST DepartmentClean Combustion Research Center
Mechanical Engineering Program
Physical Sciences and Engineering (PSE) Division
Combustion and Laser Diagnostics Laboratory
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AbstractWe experimentally investigated the effect of applied DC electric fields on the flame spread over polyethylene-coated electrical wire. The flame-spread rates over electrical wire with negative and positive DC electric fields from 0 to ±7 kV were measured and analyzed. We compared the results for DC electric fields with previous results for AC electric fields. We explored whether or not various flame shapes could be obtained with DC electric fields and the main reason for the flame-spread acceleration, particularly at the end of the electrical wire, for AC electric fields. We found that DC electric fields do not significantly affect the flame-spread rates. However, the flame shape is mildly altered by the ionic wind effect even for DC electric fields. The flame-spread rate is relevant to the flame shape and the slanted direction in spite of the mild impact. A possible explanation for the flame spread is given by a thermal-balance mechanism and fuel-vapor jet. © 2011 The Korean Society of Mechanical Engineers.