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Analysis of the Kinetics and Yields of OH Radical Production from the CH3OCH2 + O2 Reaction in the Temperature Range 195–650 K: An Experimental and Computational study

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posted on 2014-08-28, 00:00 authored by A. J. Eskola, S. A. Carr, R. J. Shannon, B. Wang, M. A. Blitz, M. J. Pilling, P. W. Seakins, S. H. Robertson
The methoxymethyl radical, CH3OCH2, is an important intermediate in the low temperature combustion of dimethyl ether. The kinetics and yields of OH from the reaction of the methoxymethyl radical with O2 have been measured over the temperature and pressure ranges of 195–650 K and 5–500 Torr by detecting the hydroxyl radical using laser-induced fluorescence following the excimer laser photolysis (248 nm) of CH3OCH2Br. The reaction proceeds via the formation of an energized CH3OCH2O2 adduct, which either dissociates to OH + 2 H2CO or is collisionally stabilized by the buffer gas. At temperatures above 550 K, a secondary source of OH was observed consistent with thermal decomposition of stabilized CH3OCH2O2 radicals. In order to quantify OH production from the CH3OCH2 + O2 reaction, extensive relative and absolute OH yield measurements were performed over the same (T, P) conditions as the kinetic experiments. The reaction was studied at sufficiently low radical concentrations (∼1011 cm–3) that secondary (radical + radical) reactions were unimportant and the rate coefficients could be extracted from simple bi- or triexponential analysis. Ab initio (CBS-GB3)/master equation calculations (using the program MESMER) of the CH3OCH2 + O2 system were also performed to better understand this combustion-related reaction as well as be able to extrapolate experimental results to higher temperatures and pressures. To obtain agreement with experimental results (both kinetics and yield data), energies of the key transition states were substantially reduced (by 20–40 kJ mol–1) from their ab initio values and the effect of hindered rotations in the CH3OCH2 and CH3OCH2OO intermediates were taken into account. The optimized master equation model was used to generate a set of pressure and temperature dependent rate coefficients for the component nine phenomenological reactions that describe the CH3OCH2 + O2 system, including four well-skipping reactions. The rate coefficients were fitted to Chebyshev polynomials over the temperature and density ranges 200 to 1000 K and 1 × 1017 to 1 × 1023 molecules cm–3 respectively for both N2 and He bath gases. Comparisons with an existing autoignition mechanism show that the well-skipping reactions are important at a pressure of 1 bar but are not significant at 10 bar. The main differences derive from the calculated rate coefficient for the CH3OCH2OO → CH2OCH2OOH reaction, which leads to a faster rate of formation of O2CH2OCH2OOH.

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