Skip to Main Content
Recent experiments and analyses have demonstrated the possibility of producing supercritical water at high temperatures and densities using a short-pulse electric surface discharge in saline solutions. This article describes a minimal ion chemistry model for supercritical salt water and the kinetics and thermodynamics of the chemistry. Time-dependent shock front calculations using the 1-D Zel'dovich-von Neumann-Doering theory are then presented. These demonstrate the feasibility of deflagration or even detonation fronts being produced by the rapid exothermic ion chemistry in the supercritical water. Finally, some potential applications to the treatment of wastewater with energy cogeneration are discussed.