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Comparative Investigation of the High Pressure Autoignition of the Butanol Isomers

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posted on 2017-06-07, 18:21 authored by Bryan WeberBryan Weber, Chih-Jen Sung
Presented at the Fall Technical Meeting of the Easter States Section of the Combustion Institute in Storrs, CT on 10 October 2011


Energy security and climate change are driving development of fuels from many new sources, particularly renewable bio-sources. One of the most familiar fuels produced from bio-sources is ethanol. Despite its near ubiquity, ethanol is not an ideal fuel for current engine technology. Among other problems, the feedstocks typically used to produce ethanol compete with food sources, driving up the cost of both fuel and food. To alleviate these concerns, a second generation of biofuels is being developed. One of the most promising fuels in the second generation of biofuels is butanol. Butanol has four isomers, which makes it an ideal test case, since the system is small enough to be modeled relatively easily but is large enough to represent the behavior of even larger alcohols. This study will focus on the high-pressure, low-temperature autoignition of the four butanol isomers, using our heated rapid compression machine. Previous autoignition studies of the butanol isomers have found several unexpected results, including no NTC region and no two-stage ignition, in temperature and pressure ranges where alkanes typically exhibit such behavior. The current work will extend the pressure, temperature and concentration ranges of previous work to determine if such behavior can be found.