Advances and challenges in laminar flame experiments and implications for combustion chemistry

F. N. Egolfopoulos, N. Hansen, Yiguang Ju, K. Kohse-Höinghaus, Chung King Law, F. Qi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

461 Scopus citations


The state of the art and the further challenges of combustion chemistry research in laminar flames are reviewed. Laminar flames constitute an essential part of kinetic model development as the rates of elementary reactions are studied and/or validated in the presence of temperature and species concentration gradients. The various methods considered in this review are the flat, low-pressure, burner-stabilized premixed flame for chemical speciation studies, and the stagnation, spherically expanding, and burner-stabilized flames for determining the global flame properties. The data derived using these methods are considered at present as the most reliable ones for three decades of pressures ranging from about 50 mbar to over 50 bar. Furthermore, the attendant initial and/or boundary conditions and physics are in principle well characterized, allowing for the isolation of various physical parameters that could affect the flame structure and thus the reported data. The merits of each approach and the advances that have been made are outlined and the uncertainties of the reported data are discussed. At the same time, the potential sources of uncertainties associated with the experimental methods and the hypotheses for data extraction using each method are discussed. These uncertainties include unquantified physical effects, inherent instrument limitations, data processing, and data interpretation. Recommendations to reduce experimental uncertainties and increase data fidelity, essential for accurate kinetic model development, are given.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)36-67
Number of pages32
JournalProgress in Energy and Combustion Science
StatePublished - Aug 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


  • Combustion chemistry
  • Experimental techniques
  • Flame modeling
  • Flame propagation
  • Flame speciation
  • Laminar flames


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