The structure of methane/air tubular diffusion flames with
fuel dilution by either CO2 or N2 is numerically investigated as a function of pressure. As pressure is increased, the reaction zone thickness reduces due to decrease in diffusivities with pressure. The flame with CO2-diluted fuel exhibits much lower nitrogen radicals (N, NH, HCN, NCO) and lower temperature than its N2-diluted counterpart. In addition to flame structure, NO emission characteristics are studied using analysis of reaction rates and quantitative reaction pathway diagrams (QRPDs). Four different routes, namely the thermal route, Fenimore prompt route, N2O route, and NNH route, are examined and it is observed that the Fenimore prompt route is the most dominant for both CO2- and N2-diuted cases at all values of pressure followed by NNH route, thermal route, and N2O route. This is due to low temperatures (below 1900 K) found in these highly diluted, stretched, and curved flames. Further, due to lower availability of N2 and nitrogen bearing radicals for the CO2-diluted cases, the reaction rates are orders of magnitude lower than their N2-diluted counterparts. This results in lower NO production for the CO2-diluted flame cases.