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Improvements in the Modeling of the Self-ignition of Tetrafluoroethylene

M. Beckmann-Kluge, F. Ferrero, V. Schröder, A. Acikalin, and J. Steinbach
Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing, Technical University, Berlin, Germany

Tetrafluoroethylene (TFE) is a gas widely employed in industry, which can under specific circumstances experience an exothermic dimerization to octafluorocyclobutane. If the heat generated by this reaction cannot be dissipated to the surroundings, the temperature inside the reactor will continue rising, leading to conditions where TFE can decompose in tetrafluoromethane and carbon black. This decomposition is highly exotermic and leads to pressure increase and finally to the autoclave rupture with serious consequences. Calculations performed with COMSOL Multiphysics show good agreements with the experimentally determined MITDs and allow for the observation of local hot spots.