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Will atomized kerosene ignite?

  1. Aug 8, 2012 #1
    Will atomized kerosene (that is, kerosene as mist in air), with a proper stoichiometric ratio in an environment of 1-2 atm and 15-45º C, ignite via a spark/plasma arc?

    I know kerosene generally has to be in a warm environment to ignite, but I am trying to figure out a way to get around that (if you have any ideas, please let me know).

    Thanks a lot!
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 8, 2012 #2
    Yep. Blew up a house that way when I was a kid. Made a great fuel air bomb, but I was too young to understand what one of those was at the time.

    You do not need a stoichiometric ratio because burning happens on the surface of each atomized droplet. This is why you can run a diesel engine with fuel/air mixtures far less than stoichiometric, since diesel fuel and kerosene are exactly the same thing for the purposes of this discussion. (Not the same thing for other discussions.)

    Since gasoline burns as a vapor and not as an atomized mist, that must be near stoichiometric.
  4. Aug 8, 2012 #3
    Sounds as if your trying to start a jet engine.
  5. Aug 8, 2012 #4


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    My thoughts were similar to Jobrag. When I saw the title of the thread I said to myself: Let's hope so, otherwise there are alot of jet airplanes in trouble. An electric arc is a very very common way to ignite fuel oil.
  6. Aug 8, 2012 #5
    That's interesting, thanks.

    Yeah. In model jet turbine engines, fuel is, as far as I can tell, always vaporized through tubes inside the combustion chamber. This makes it so that the engine must be hot to run on kerosene (so it's usually started on propane then switched to kerosene), and I believe it's also less efficient. I'm hoping to use 2 or 3 micro atomizers to get the job done, and hopefully I can get it to work.
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2012
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