China’s Shenzhou 16 astronauts performed an eye-raising experiment in area involving open flames aboard the Tiangong area station.
Astronauts Gui Haichao and Zhu Yangzhu lit a candle throughout a dwell lecture broadcast from China’s Tiangong area station on Sept. 21 to display how flames burn in microgravity. Strikingly, the flames seem practically spherical, slightly than the teardrop-shaped flames we’re acquainted with again on Earth.
Lit candles on Earth produce flames formed by way of buoyancy-driven convection, with scorching air rising and chilly air descending. That combustion convection present is weak within the microgravity surroundings of low Earth orbit, nonetheless. This implies flames diffuse in all instructions, leading to spherical fireballs.
Associated: Fireplace-in-space experiment might quickly make its method to the moon
The livestreamed lecture was the fourth so-called “Tiangong classroom” hosted on China’s area station. The astronauts interacted with college students in 5 school rooms throughout China, demonstrating a lot of microgravity phenomena. As with earlier school rooms, the astronauts demonstrated that many bodily processes behave in another way than they do on Earth.
Nevertheless the candle experiment — through which Gui strikes a match to provide an open flame to gentle the candle — would seemingly be met without warning by Worldwide House Station members, who’ve strict guidelines relating to flammable supplies and open flames.
I made this – that point ESA astronaut @Astro_Alex made Mission Management assume he may need snuck an precise candle onto @Space_Station. It is wonderful what you are able to do with an outdated penlight and a few spare metallic tape: pic.twitter.com/TFlHX42YOpMarch 9, 2021
Combustion in microgravity has been the topic of quite a few experiments on the ISS, however often utilizing a specially-designed combustion built-in rack, maintaining hearth remoted and contained.
Tiangong additionally has its Combustion Experiment Rack (CER) for severe analysis on this space.