RESEARCH PAPERS: Radiative Transfer

Computational Evaluation of Approximate Rayleigh–Debye–Gans/Fractal-Aggregate Theory for the Absorption and Scattering Properties of Soot

[+] Author and Article Information
T. L. Farias, M. G. Carvalho

Mechanical Engineering Department, Instituto Superior Técnico, 1096 Lisbon, Portugal

Ü. Ö. Köylü, G. M. Faeth

Department of Aerospace Engineering, The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2118

J. Heat Transfer 117(1), 152-159 (Feb 01, 1995) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2822296 History: Received December 01, 1993; Revised April 01, 1994; Online December 05, 2007


A computational evaluation of an approximate theory for the optical properties of soot is described, emphasizing the small-angle (Guinier) regime. The approximate theory (denoted RDG-FA theory) is based on the Rayleigh–Debye–Gans scattering approximation while treating soot as mass-fractal aggregates of spherical primary particles that have constant diameters and refractive indices. The approximate theory was evaluated by more exact predictions from the solution of the volume integral equation formulation of the governing equations, using the method of moments, and based on the ICP algorithm of Iskander et al. (1989). Numerical simulations were used to construct statistically significant populations of soot aggregates having appropriate fractal properties and prescribed numbers of primary particles per aggregate. Optical properties considered included absorption, differential scattering, and total scattering cross sections for conditions typical of soot within flame environments at wavelengths in the visible and the infrared. Specific ranges of aggregate properties were as follows: primary particle optical size parameters up to 0.4, numbers of primary particles per aggregate up to 512, mean fractal dimensions of 1.75, mean fractal prefactors of 8.0, and refractive indices typical of soot. Over the range of the evaluation, ICP and RDG-FA predictions generally agreed within numerical uncertainties (ca. 10 percent) within the Guinier regime, complementing similar performance of RDG-FA theory in the power-law regime based on recent experiments. Thus, the use of approximate RDG-FA theory to estimate the optical properties of soot appears to be acceptable—particularly in view of the significant uncertainties about soot optical properties due to current uncertainties about soot refractive indices.

Copyright © 1995 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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