Experimental Observations of PMMA Spheres Burning at Reduced Gravity.
Experimental Observations of PMMA Spheres Burning at
Yang, J. C.; Hamins, A.; Glover, M.; King, M. D.
Microgravity Combustion Workshop, Fourth (4th)
International. Proceedings. National Aeronautics and
Space Administration, NASA Lewis Research Center. NASA
Conference Publication 10194. May 19-21, 1997,
Cleveland, OH, 243-248 pp, 1997.
polymethyl methacrylate; reduced gravity; combustion;
Polymer combustion is a very complicated process which
involves the coupling of gas-phase combustion, melting,
pyrolysis and possible charring of the condensed phase.
Although only a few studies on the combustion of a
spherically shaped polymer have been conducted, there is
renewed interest in the subject. At the Third
International Microgravity Combustion Workshop, we
presented a preliminary experimental plan and proposed
an apparatus to study the combustion of
polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) sphere at reduced gravity.
In this paper, we describe the experimental hardware in
detail, summarize our observations since the last
workshop, and describe future studies. The main
objective is to determine the burning rate of PMMA
spheres at reduced gravity under different ambient
oxygen concentrations and total pressures. The
dependence of the burning rate on the initial sphere
diameter will be examined. It is anticipated that the
simple spherical geometry in conjunction with reduced
gravity will facilitate an assessment of the effect of
condensed phase behavior on polymer burning processes
and can be used as a means to test polymer combustion