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Published July 2007 | Accepted Version
Journal Article Open

Detonation interaction with a diffuse interface and subsequent chemical reaction


We have investigated the interaction of a detonation with an interface separating a combustible from an oxidizing mixture. The ethylene-oxygen combustible mixture had a fuel-rich composition to promote secondary combustion with the oxidizer in the turbulent mixing zone that resulted from the interaction. Diffuse interfaces were created by the formation of a gravity current using a sliding valve that initially separated the test gas and combustible mixture. Opening the valve allowed a gravity current to develop before the detonation was initiated. By varying the delay between opening the valve and initiating the detonation it was possible to achieve a wide range of interface conditions. The interface orientation and thickness with respect to the detonation wave have a profound effect on the outcome of the interaction. Diffuse interfaces result in curved detonation waves with a transmitted shock and following turbulent mixing zone. The impulse was measured to quantify the degree of secondary combustion, which accounted for 1–5% of the total impulse. A model was developed that estimated the volume expansion of a fluid element due to combustion in the turbulent mixing zone and predicted the resulting impulse increment.

Additional Information

© 2007 Springer-Verlag. Received: 31 October 2006; Revised: 20 February 2007; Accepted: 6 March 2007; Published online: 27 April 2007. Funding for this project was provided by Sandia National Laboratories.

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