Combustion research is the study of the chemical reaction between substances. It is usually accompanied by the generation of heat or flame which in turn generate light. Combustion is found in a variety of applications, from the simple striking of a match or lighting a butane lighter to more complex occurrences like those that occur in combustion engine analysis in the automotive industry. Combustion applications are also found in rocket and jet engines in the aerospace industry and in the ignition of furnaces. We need to study these events because the provide us with important information about chemical reactions and efficiency concerns.
For an in-depth look into the study of combustion in an explosives setting down download our free whitepaper, “Precision Explosives Analysis with High-Speed Imaging.”
Why High-Speed Cameras for Combustion Research?
Speed and Resolution Advancements
High-speed imaging is about finding the balance between speed and resolution. As speed increases the resolution must drop to compensate for larger amounts of data being pushed through the camera components. Combustion events typically require a speed of between 10,000 to 50,000 frames-per-second (fps). The Phantom v2512 is the fastest 1 Mpx camera available and is capable of up to 25,000 fps at full resolution (1200 x 800).
Advancements in high-speed sensor technology have provided the opportunity for the creation of the Phantom v2640. The newest camera on the market is also the fastest 4 Mpx camera. This means that the Phantom v2640 is capable of up to 12,500 fps in full HD (1920 x 1080). This is important in combustion events where detail is more important than speed. The larger resolution capabilities means a shaper image with less noise is possible which can increase researchers abilities to see aspects of an event that were not visible prior.
Extremes Occur Often
In combustion research operators often find that there are environmental extremes present. The most common extreme occurrence is the flash of sudden bright light that occurs. This can overexpose pixels and white out visibility. Critical data that occurs during these flashes can be lost. Phantom cameras have high dynamic range to help preserve important details that would otherwise be missed.
Another way to avoid losing data during combustion events is by adjusting the exposure settings of the camera. By reducing the exposure time less light is absorbed and when combined with the high dynamic range of a Phantom UHS camera fine details become visible. The UHS series of cameras provided some of the lowest exposure times available and are perfect for intense light flashes.
Often during combustion research multiple Phantom cameras will be used to capture different aspects of the same event. One camera set to record the events during and after a light flash can be paired with another that has reduced exposure time to catch what happens during the bright flash.
Compatibility with Imaging Methods
Combustion research can be recorded with a standard lens and camera setup pointed directly at the event but sometimes it requires alternate techniques. When researchers wish to analyze invisible aspects, such as gas or shock waves, specialized methods of study are necessary. Schlieren imaging is one of those methods that makes the unseen seen. The Phantom camera Ultrahigh-series of cameras are often found in schlieren imaging situations because of their high sensitivity and dynamic range.