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Effects of high activation energies on acoustic timescale detonation initiation

Taylor & Francis
Publication Date
  • Chemistry
  • Computer Science
  • Musicology
  • Physics


Acoustic timescale Deflagration-to-Detonation Transition (DDT) has been shown to occur through the generation of compression waves emitted by a hot spot or reaction centre where the pressure and temperature increase with little diminution of density. In order to compensate for the multi-scale nature of the physico-chemical processes, previous numerical simulations in this area have been limited to relatively small activation energies. In this work, a computational study investigates the effect of increased activation energy on the time required to form a detonation wave and the change in behaviour of each hot spot as the activation energy is increased. The simulations use a localised spatially distributed thermal power deposition of limited duration into a finite volume of reactive gas to facilitate DDT. The Adaptive Wavelet-Collocation Method is used to solve efficiently the 1-D reactive Euler equations with one-step Arrhenius kinetics. The DDT process as described in previous work is characterised by the formation of hot spots during an initial transient period, explosion of the hot spots and creation of an accelerating reaction front that reaches the lead shock and forms an overdriven detonation wave. Current results indicate that as the activation energy is raised the chemical heat release becomes more temporally distributed. Hot spots that produce an accelerating reaction front with low activation energies change behaviour with increased activation energy so that no accelerating reaction front is created. An acoustic timescale ratio is defined that characterises the change in behaviour of each hot spot.

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