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Simulations of Compressible, Diffusive, Reactive Flows with Detailed Chemistry Using a High-Order Hybrid WENO-CD Scheme


Ziegler, John Lewis (Jack) (2012) Simulations of Compressible, Diffusive, Reactive Flows with Detailed Chemistry Using a High-Order Hybrid WENO-CD Scheme. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/ZKW8-ES97.


A hybrid weighted essentially non-oscillatory (WENO)/centered-difference (CD) numerical method, with low numerical dissipation, high-order shock-capturing, and structured adaptive mesh refinement (SAMR), has been developed for the direct numerical simulation (DNS) of the multicomponent, compressive, reactive Navier-Stokes equations. The method enables accurate resolution of diffusive processes within reaction zones. This numerical method is verified with a series of one- and two-dimensional test problems, including a convergence test of a two-dimensional unsteady reactive double Mach reflection problem. Validation of the method is conducted with experimental comparisons of three applications all of which model multi-dimensional, unsteady reactive flow: an irregular propane detonation, shock and detonation bifurcations, and spark ignition deflagrations.

The numerical approach combines time-split reactive source terms with a high-order, shock-capturing scheme specifically designed for diffusive flows. A description of the order-optimized, symmetric, finite difference, flux-based, hybrid WENO / centered-difference scheme is given, along with its implementation in a high-order SAMR framework. The implementation of new techniques for discontinuity flagging, scheme-switching, and high-order prolongation and restriction is described. In particular, the refined methodology does not require upwinded WENO at grid refinement interfaces for stability, allowing high-order prolongation and thereby eliminating a significant source of numerical diffusion within the overall code performance.

A minimally reduced irregular detonation mixture mechanism (22 species and 53 reversible reactions) is developed and combined with the WENO-CD numerical method to accurately model two-dimensional hydrocarbon (propane) detonations with detailed chemistry and transport. First of its kind, resolved double Mach reflection (DMR) detonation simulations with a large hyrdocarbon mixture are presented. Detailed discussions and comparisons of the influence of grid resolution, lower-order numerical methods, and inviscid approximations are made in addition to the detailed presentation of fluid dynamics found in an unsteady, highly unstable, reactive DMR simulation. Also conducted are direct experimental comparisons to soot foils and schlieren images with an unresolved large-scale propane detonation channel simulation.

The numerical method is also applied to the DNS of two other problems, detonation/shock bifurcations and spark ignited deflagrations. Through the resolution of viscous/diffusive scales, new insights into how a bifurcated foot develops after a detonation end wall reflection, and how geometry can influence the development of a flame kernel after spark ignition are found.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:detonation, reactive flow, compressible flow, Navier-Stokes, DNS, spark ignition, reactive shock bifurcation
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Engineering and Applied Science
Major Option:Aeronautics
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Pullin, Dale Ian (co-advisor)
  • Shepherd, Joseph E. (co-advisor)
Group:GALCIT, Explosion Dynamics Laboratory
Thesis Committee:
  • Shepherd, Joseph E. (chair)
  • Colonius, Tim
  • Meiron, Daniel I.
  • Pullin, Dale Ian
Defense Date:29 November 2011
Non-Caltech Author Email:jackalak (AT)
Funding AgencyGrant Number
DOE CSGF (Department of Energy Computational Science Graduate Fellowship)UNSPECIFIED
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:12302011-185742249
Persistent URL:
Ziegler, John Lewis (Jack)0000-0001-6127-5567
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:6759
Deposited By: John Ziegler
Deposited On:26 Jan 2012 23:37
Last Modified:25 Oct 2023 22:43

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