High-efficiency design of combustion kinetic experiments based on genetic algorithm

Zijun Zhou, Can Huang, Keli Lin, Yiru Wang, Chung K. Law, Bin Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Experimental data is essential for the improvement of combustion kinetic models. Experimental design based on model analysis results can screen optimal experimental conditions with maximum information content. However, the computational cost of designing experiments by enumeration becomes unaffordable when an enormity of conditions with different temperatures/pressures/mixtures are to be investigated. An approach to facilitate the efficient discovery of optimal experimental conditions based on the genetic algorithm (GA) is proposed in this work. This approach regards the task of experimental design as an optimization problem to minimize an objective function that measures the information content provided by an experiment. The sensitivity entropy and surrogate model similarity are combined to form the objective function of optimization. Three designs of dimethyl ether experiments are provided to demonstrate the approach. The first case utilizes a benchmark for optimal experiments to validate the effectiveness of GA. The results show that GA can achieve better design results than the traditional enumeration strategy with less than 10% computational cost. The second case illustrates how GA is applied in the design of multiple experiments. The last one is an application in designing multiple experiments of various types, including ignition, species measurements in a jet-stirred reactor (JSR) and a plug flow reactor (PFR). The model parameters are calibrated with the designed experimental data using a Bayesian-based optimization approach. The uncertainties of model parameters are significantly reduced after the optimization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5219-5228
Number of pages10
JournalProceedings of the Combustion Institute
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 2023
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


  • Combustion kinetic model
  • Experimental design
  • Genetic algorithm
  • Sensitivity entropy
  • Surrogate model similarity


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