Abstract

An experimental protocol, using photoionization controlled-loss spectroscopy (PICLS), has been developed for obtaining absolute number densities of atomic hydrogen from laser-induced fluorescence measurements in flames. Two laser beams are employed, the first to excite hydrogen atoms from the ground state to the second excited state via two-photon absorption and the second to strongly photoionize the excited atoms. The resulting fluorescence measurements are independent of quenching. A model is presented that assures the viability of PICLS as long as the photoionization rate is greater than or equal to the quenching rate. The model is verified in fuel-lean, stoichiometric, and fuel-rich flat premixed H2/O2/N2 flames at pressures of 20 and 72 Torr. Over this range in pressure, the ratio of number densities obtained from PICLS to those calculated from partial equilibrium is constant to within 20%. Most of the error arises from the sensitivity of the partial equilibrium calculations to small uncertainties in both the fuel-oxidizer ratio and the measured OH concentration. Because of the quenching-independent nature of PICLS, quantitative fluorescence measurements can be made by calibrating at a single favorable flame condition.

© 1987 Optical Society of America

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