The explosion of unconfined vapor clouds produced by the dispersion of flammable liquid or vapor spills is becoming a serious problem, mainly because of the increased size of the spills in recent years. This paper surveys accidental explosions that have occurred over the past 40 years and also evaluates recent research efforts which pertain to the dispersion and explosion of large vapor clouds. The major problem appears to be the lack of a fundamental understanding of a transient flame-buoyancy interaction during combustion of the cloud, since both accidental and deliberate explosions have exhibited over-all flame propagation rates almost an order of magnitude above the values one would expect without the consideration of buoyancy effects. Other problems which are discussed include: (1) the initial dispersion of the cloud, (2) the prediction of blast effects, and (3) the question of direct initiation of detonation. Recommendations for future research are given.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Combustion Institute

    986 Union Trust Building
    Pittsburgh, PA  United States  15219
  • Authors:
    • Strehlow, R A
  • Publication Date: 1973

Media Info

  • Features: References;
  • Pagination: p. 1189-98

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00084908
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Combustion Institute
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: May 19 1975 12:00AM