Abstract

In this experimental study, we are presenting the ability of laser-induced plasmas with successive pulsation to identify combustion instabilities (CI) of a premixed lab-scale combustor. An acoustic disturbance equivalent to a shockwave perturbation is generated in the main air supply line of a swirled injector prior to the fuel addition by focusing nanosecond laser pulses of 1.6 W average power at 10 Hz. The shockwaves are attenuated to be strong pressure waves when reaching the combustor and impact the pressure field for short periods. After plasma breakdowns, the system returns back to its original state after 4 ms once the added acoustic energy has been fully dissipated. Given a set geometry, it is observed that the laser-induced breakdown amplifies the characteristic frequency peaks of the combustor system when actuated in cold flow. Furthermore, when applied to reacting flows, the pulsating acoustic perturbations impact the pressure fluctuation in the combustor, e.g., reducing the amplitude of the primary characteristic frequency peak at certain conditions. The identification of the main instability modes thanks to the plasma shockwave provides proof of the potential use of this novel diagnosis strategy in various and complex combustion systems.

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