In this paper, we investigate the impact of heat transfer between the flame and the flame-holder on the dynamic stability characteristics in a 50-kW backward facing step combustor. We conducted tests where we use a backward step block made of two different materials: ceramic and stainless steel whose thermal conductivities are 1.06 and 12 W/m/K, respectively. A set of experiments was conducted using a propane/air mixture at Re = 6500 for the inlet temperature of 300–500 K at atmospheric pressure. We measure the dynamic pressure and flame chemiluminescence to examine distinct stability characteristics using each flame-holder material over a range of operating conditions. We find that for tests with a flame-holder made of ceramic, the onset of instability is significantly delayed in time and, for certain operating conditions, disappears altogether. Stated differently, for certain operating conditions, the combustor can be stabilized by reducing the thermal conductivity of the flame-holder. As the thermal conductivity of the flame-holder increases, the combustor becomes increasingly unstable over a range of operating conditions. These results imply that the dynamic stability characteristics depend strongly on the heat transfer between the flame and the combustor wall near the flame anchoring region.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.