A team of researchers working at the University of Maryland has discovered the structure of the mysterious blue vortex flame. In their articles published in the journal Scientific advance, the team describes using computer simulation to determine the structure of the unique flame type.
Back in 2016, a team of researchers discovered what they described as a blue swirling flame while they were studying the properties of a liquid fuel that floats on water. They added fuel to a tank filled with water wrapped in a space creating a vortex. They describe the fire as a tornado at first glance, but not long after that, turning into what they call a blue swirl flame. At the time, they noted that its coloration indicated it was capable of being very efficient, burning fuel without producing soot – a property that could be helpful in cleaning up the oil spill. Since then, others have considered the unique type of flame, but no one has tried to understand its structure. In this new effort, the researchers took a closer look at the fire and found it was actually three types of flames merged into one.
To learn more about the nature of the blue vortex fire, the researchers created computer simulations using known conditions to create them. They then slowly adjust the parameters until they can create the virtual flare. They found that the flame was actually the result of three known types of flames merging: the flame with an invisible outer flame, which occurs when there is less fuel than oxygen in the mixture – and two types of flame. Inside is visible in which higher fuel rate is more common.
The researchers suggest that knowing that blue swirl flames are made up of other types of flames may allow them to be created under more controllable circumstances – and it would allow to skip the cyclone phase. , which is a good thing, they note, because such flames are very dangerous, as was recorded in recent years in wildfires. They also suggested that due to their effectiveness, such flames could be used for cleaner burning.
Designing a flame in space can result in a soot-free flame
JD Chung el al., “The structure of the blue vortex reveals,” Scientific advance (Year 2020). Progress.sciencemag.org/lookup… .1126 / sciadv.aba0827
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Quote: Revealing the structure of the mysterious blue vortex flare (2020, August 13) retrieved August 13, 2020 from https://phys.org/news/2020-08-revealing-mysterious-blue- flame.html
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