U.S. Department of Energy


Date of this Version



F. Fuest et al., Combust. Flame (2012);



To reduce the impact of combustion of fossil fuels on air quality and climate change, dimethyl ether (DME) is a promising alternative diesel fuel candidate. Technical combustion processes, including formation of pollutants, are influenced by turbulence–chemistry interaction. Therefore, accurate prediction by computational combustion models of combustion systems burning DME must account for multiple scalars and scalar gradients. The testing of such models requires detailed experiments. Here a study is presented on the feasibility of simultaneous species and temperature measurements in turbulent dimethyl ether flames, using line-imaged Raman/Rayleigh scattering of the major species H2, O2, N2, CO, CO2, H2O, C2H6O and laser induced fluorescence of CO. The measurement system and data evaluation methods developed to investigate methane–air flames are extended to address dimethyl ether flames. The Raman signal intensity and spectral shape of the Raman scattering from dimethyl ether over a range of temperatures are presented, based on measurements in electrically heated flows and laminar jet flames. These data are used to develop an iterative method for data evaluation that allows determination of indispensable crosstalk correction terms for the concentration measurements of O2 and CO2. Issues of fluorescence interferences, mainly from C2 radicals on the fuel-rich side of the reaction zone, and their corrections are discussed. Laminar flame calculations are used to investigate the role of the intermediate species (CH4, CH2O, C2H4, C2H2, C2H6, CH3) in the reaction zone. In particular, their effect on the mixture fraction calculation and its relationship to the experimentally determined mixture fraction is examined. The impact of the intermediate species on deviations in concentration and temperature profiles due to species-specific Raman- and Rayleigh scattering cross-sections is demonstrated. Finally, species concentrations and temperature profiles from measurements in a turbulent piloted jet flame of dimethyl ether are shown.