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Open AccessArticle

Experimental Investigation into the Combustion Characteristics of Propane Hydrates in Porous Media

by Xiang-Ru Chen 1,2,3, Xiao-Sen Li 1,2, Zhao-Yang Chen 1,2,*, Yu Zhang 1,2, Ke-Feng Yan 1,2 and Qiu-Nan Lv 1,2
1
Key Laboratory of Gas Hydrate, Guangzhou Institute of Energy Conversion, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510640, China
2
Guangzhou Center for Gas Hydrate Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510640, China
3
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100083, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Richard Coffin
Energies 2015, 8(2), 1242-1255; https://doi.org/10.3390/en8021242
Received: 11 November 2014 / Revised: 26 December 2014 / Accepted: 26 January 2015 / Published: 5 February 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Coastal Ocean Natural Gas Hydrate 2014)
The combustion characteristics of both pure propane hydrates and the mixtures of hydrates and quartz sands were investigated by combustion experiments. The flame propagation, flame appearance, burning time and temperature in different hydrate layers were studied. For pure propane hydrate combustion, the initial flame falls in the “premixed” category. The flame propagates very rapidly, mainly as a result of burnt gas expansion. The flame finally self-extinguishes with some proportion of hydrates remaining unburned. For the hydrate-sand mixture combustion, the flame takes the form of many tiny discontinuous flames appearing and disappearing at different locations. The burn lasts for a much shorter amount of time than pure hydrate combustion. High porosity and high hydrate saturation is beneficial to the combustion. The hydrate combustion is the combustion of propane gas resulting from the dissociation of the hydrates. In both combustion test scenarios, the hydrate-dissociated water plays a key role in the fire extinction, because it is the main resistance that restrains the heat transfer from the flame to the hydrates and that prevents the hydrate-dissociated gas from releasing into the combustion zone. View Full-Text
Keywords: propane hydrates; combustion; porous media; flame propagation propane hydrates; combustion; porous media; flame propagation
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MDPI and ACS Style

Chen, X.-R.; Li, X.-S.; Chen, Z.-Y.; Zhang, Y.; Yan, K.-F.; Lv, Q.-N. Experimental Investigation into the Combustion Characteristics of Propane Hydrates in Porous Media. Energies 2015, 8, 1242-1255.

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