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A Novel Experiment Approach for Measurement Breakup Length, Cone Angle, Sheet Velocity, and Film Thickness in Swirl Air-Blast Atomizers
ISSN: 1946-3936, e-ISSN: 1946-3944
Published July 31, 2023 by SAE International in United States
Citation: Phung, D., Pham, T., and X. Pham, P., "A Novel Experiment Approach for Measurement Breakup Length, Cone Angle, Sheet Velocity, and Film Thickness in Swirl Air-Blast Atomizers," SAE Int. J. Engines 17(1):2024, https://doi.org/10.4271/03-17-01-0006.
Measuring the dynamic parameters of liquid fragments generated in the near-field of atomizing sprays poses a significant challenge due to the random nature of the fragments, the instability of the spray, and the limitations of current measuring technology. Precise determination of these parameters can aid in improving the control of the atomization process, which is necessary for providing suitable spray structures with appropriate flow rates and droplet size distributions for various applications such as those used in heat engines. In piston and gas turbine engines, controlling spray characteristics such as penetration, cone angle, particle size, and droplet size distribution is crucial to improve combustion efficiency and decrease exhaust emissions. This can be accomplished by adjusting the structural and/or operating parameters of the fuel supply system. This article aims to measure the breakup length, spray cone angle, axial velocity, breakup time, and liquid sheet film thickness for a swirl air-blast atomizer used in a gas-steam engine. The measurement was conducted using a shadowgraph imaging system developed specifically for this study, consisting of a high-speed camera, a lens, and a light source. While lasers are commonly used as light sources in the literature, this study utilized a special LED high-speed pulse light generator, which is cheaper, easier to handle, and provides a more uniform background. Images were processed using a MATLAB code developed for this study. Although the breakup zone is naturally random and the breakup location significantly varies with time, the novel method developed in this study helps quantify critical parameters under different operating conditions.