Purdue School of Engineering and Technology

Purdue School of Engineering and Technology


ME 52500 / 3 Cr. (3 Class)

Physical and chemical aspects of basic combustion phenomena. Classification of flames. Measurement of laminar flame speeds. Factors influencing burning velocity. Theory of flame propagation. Flammability, chemical aspects, chemical equilibrium. Chain reactions. Calculation and measurement of flame temperature. Diffusion flames. Fuels. Atomization and evaporation of liquid fuels. Theories of ignition, stability, and combustion efficiency.


An Introduction to Combustion, Stephen R.Turns, McGraw-Hill, 2nd Edition, 2000


To prepare the student for engineering analysis and design of combustion systems, and assessment of fire and explosion hazards, based on fundamental physical and chemical science of combustion phenomena.


After completion of this course, the students should be able to:

  1. Discuss the fundamental and characteristic physical and chemical features of simple flames and combustion processes.
  2. Balance chemical reactions, calculate product composition, and estimate the adiabatic flame temperature and equilibrium composition of major combustion products.
  3. Determine the approximate rate of a combustion reaction from global kinetic data, and estimate the rate of reactions in well-stirred flow and batch chemical reactors.
  4. Describe the major elementary reactions and reaction mechanisms of hydrogen and hydrocarbon combustion.
  5. Discuss the important diffusion, convection, and generation terms in the equations of mass, momentum, energy and species conservation, for combustion processes.
  6. Describe the major features of premixed combustion, detonation and deflagration modes, laminar and turbulent premixed flames.
  7. Explain the thermal model of laminar premixed flame propagation, ignition and flammability limits, and estimate the flame velocity and thickness.
  8. Apply the concept of mixture fraction to describe one-dimensional non-premixed diffusion flames.
  9. Describe the features of laminar and turbulent non-premixed jet flames, and liquid droplet and solid fuel combustion.
  10. Independently review a specialized topic in combustion, or apply combustion knowledge to understand practical combustion devices such as engines and furnaces.
  11. Describe the types of pollutants generated in typical combustion processes and the available control techniques, and report emissions rates in appropriate units.
  1. Introduction to combustion processes.
  2. Thermodynamics and fundamentals of chemical thermodynamics.
  3. Gas Phase chemical kinetics.
  4. Explosions.
  5. Premixed combustion.
  6. Non-premixed combustion.
  7. Current research topics and issues in combustion.