Three-dimensional simulations of a non-premixed microburner (channel height Lz=0.75 mm)are used to study flame structure and stability, for both H2–O2 and CH4–O2 mixtures, matching conditions of previously reported experiments. Thermal quenching and slow diffusive mixing lead to incomplete combustion and, for some flow rates, steady flame streets form in the channel for CH4–O2, matching experimental observations. Still smaller-scale burners, with channel heights Lz=0.375 mm and Lz=0.25 mm, are also simulated, and flame streets are seen even for H2–O2 cases due to the strong thermal quenching. A wall-chemistry model is used to assess the importance of wall quenching of H and O radicals. Wall recombination kinetics weaken the flames, reduce temperature by over 100 K, significantly reduce the length of the flame diffusion tails, and reduce overall combustion completeness. The basic mechanisms observed to be important in the microburner channel are included in an analogous one-dimensional diffusion-flame model, which includes a heat-loss factor motivated by the full burner. For similar conditions to the microburner and high heat loss, the solution oscillates sufficiently strongly to extinguish the flame, as observed in some microburner cases. For more modest thermal quenching, the oscillations persist and are analogous to the stable flame streets seen in the microburner.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)349-362
Number of pages14
JournalCombustion and Flame
StatePublished - Aug 2019


  • Flame quenching
  • Flame streets
  • Microcombustion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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