Shane Thomas Kosir



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The emergence of computing, such as multiprocessing and raw processing speed, allows for opportunities to simulate chemical models with relative ease. An open source software module, Cantera, is increasing in popularity within the combustion community as well as among other chemistry and chemical engineering disciplines. This software module can be easily integrated into Python or MATLAB and is often used to simulate problems involving thermodynamics, transport phenomena, and/or chemical kinetics. The purpose of this research is to develop a deeper understanding of physically controlling autoignition processes. The time for a fuel to autoignite, often referred to as ignition delay, is an important measure as it describes the reactivity of a fuel under given conditions. Experiments, such as rapid compression machines and shock tubes, can measure this parameter. These experimental values can be compared to simulations performed in Cantera or CHEMKIN, another chemical kinetic software similar to Cantera, to validate chemical kinetic models of given fuel species. It is of interest to investigate ignition delay as it is a contributing factor to the overall chemical timescale relating to lean blowoff (LBO) in a typical gas turbine engine. LBO represents the lowest possible fuel/air mixture, relative to the stoichiometric ratio, before a flame is not self-sustained and becomes extinguished. A better understanding of the time scales leading to LBO could allow it to be used as a criterion for the approval of alternative (non-petroleum) jet fuels.

Publication Date


Project Designation

Independent Research

Primary Advisor

Joshua S. Heyne, Rob D. Stachler

Primary Advisor's Department

Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering


Stander Symposium project

The Development of a Deeper Understanding of Cantera for use in the Simulation of Modern Combustion Problems