Abstract

A molecular tagging method for velocity measurements in reacting environments such as propulsion devices and high-temperature combustion-assisted wind tunnels is described. The method employs a femtosecond (write) laser to photodissociate ${{\rm{H}}_2}{\rm{O}}$, a common combustion product, into a locally high concentration of OH radicals. These radicals are tracked by planar laser-induced fluorescence (PLIF) from the ${{\rm{A}}^2}\Sigma - {{\rm{X}}^2}\Pi$ (1–0) vibrational band excited by a time-delayed 284 nm (read) laser sheet. As a variant of hydroxyl tagging velocimetry, the source laser can also be used to dissociate nitrogen for femtosecond laser electronic excitation tagging velocimetry to mark the time-zero location of the write laser for velocimetry in non-reacting regions using the same imaging system without OH PLIF. The OH tracer lifetime is studied in a hydrogen-air Hencken burner operating at $\Phi = 0.5 - 1.8$ to evaluate the tracking capability for velocimetry over a range of conditions. Effects of changing read laser wavelength, excitation energy, and influence of background flame emission are also studied. The data processing methodology and results are described for tracking displacements with 9–25 µm uncertainty in a hydrogen diffusion flame. This method presents several advantages in operational convenience and availability of laser sources, and it provides an avenue for improvements in the repetition rate, precision, and applicability over previously demonstrated hydroxyl tagging schemes.

© 2020 Optical Society of America

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