Published online by Cambridge University Press: 13 October 2017
This study focuses on the response of premixed flames to a transient hydrodynamic perturbation in an intermediate situation between laminar stretched flames and turbulent flames: an axisymmetric vortex interacting with a flame. The reasons motivating this choice are discussed in the framework of turbulent combustion models and flame response to the stretch rate. We experimentally quantify the dependence of the flame kinematic properties (displacement and consumption speeds) to geometrical scalars (stretch rate and curvature) in flames characterized by different effective Lewis numbers. Whilst the displacement speed can be readily measured using particle image velocimetry and tomographic diagnostics, providing a reliable estimate of the consumption speed from experiments remains particularly challenging. In the present work, a method based on a budget of fuel on a well chosen domain is proposed and validated both experimentally and numerically using two-dimensional direct numerical simulations of flame/vortex interactions. It is demonstrated that the Lewis number impact neither the geometrical nor the kinematic features of the flames, these quantities being much more influenced by the vortex intensity. While interacting with the vortex, the flame displacement (at an isotherm close to the leading edge) and consumption speeds are found to increase almost independently of the type of fuel. We show that the total stretch rate is not the only scalar quantity impacting the flame displacement and consumption speeds and that curvature has a significant influence. Experimental data are interpreted in the light of asymptotic theories revealing the existence of two distinct Markstein numbers, one characterizing the dependence of flame speed to curvature, the other to the total stretch rate. This theory appears to be well suited for representing the evolution of the displacement speed with respect to either the total stretch rate, curvature or strain rate. It also explains the limited dependence of the flame displacement speed to Lewis number and the strong correlation with curvature observed in the experiments. An explicit relationship between displacement and consumption speeds is also given, indicating that the fuel consumption rate is likely to be altered by both the total stretch rate and curvature.