Faculty Advisor

Barnett, Jonathan R.

Faculty Advisor

Thompson, Robert W.


Propane has good refrigeration properties, and it does not degrade the ozone as chlorofluorocarbons do. However, its flammability makes it hazardous for refrigeration applications. This project investigated the kinetics of propane oxidation in the presence of fire suppression agents. This was done experimentally in a tubular plug flow reactor and theoretically using the Chemkin kinetic modeling software package. The kinetic model was shown to accurately predict trends in species concentrations as a function of temperature, but discrepancies exist due to reactions occurring outside the reaction zone in the experimental setup. The results of this work show that the decomposition products of CFI (specifically iodine) significantly limit propane oxidation above 750 degrees Celsius. From these results, it can be concluded that both CFI and iodine should be investigated further to determine if they could be used with propane in refrigeration applications.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

January 2000


Chemical Engineering

Project Type

Major Qualifying Project


Restricted-WPI community only

Advisor Department

Fire Protection Engineering

Advisor Department

Chemical Engineering