If combustion and its related efficiencies were not challenging for us, we and others would not dedicate so many new resources to the topic. This article will point out some of these available resources, including the pages of Industrial Heating.

Over the years, improved efficiencies have been demanded by both users of combustion systems and their regulating agencies. NOx and CO2 reductions are examples, and addressing efficiencies is key for newer systems. 


Industrial Heating Resources

One of the newer resources available that addresses the subject of combustion is the “A Comprehensive Guide to Heat Treatment” eBook (vols. 1 & 2) from Dan Herring. This resource compiles The Heat Treat Doctor® columns into two volumes. A number of these columns involve combustion and address issues. 

There is a chapter dedicated to Atmosphere Heat Treating Fundamentals. Some of the covered topics are furnace atmospheres, exothermic and endothermic gas generators, atmosphere control and atmosphere/process simulation. You will also find chapter sections for the following: atmosphere gas carburizing, sintering atmospheres, soot, furnace burnouts and more. Additional information is contained in this resource beyond furnace atmospheres and combustion. You can find both volumes on our website (www.industrialheating.com) using the Multimedia tab and clicking on “eBooks.”


Atmosphere Heat Treatment (Volumes I and II)

Another resource from Dan Herring is his two-book series, Atmosphere Heat Treatment (AHT). While not a combustion book, AHT might be all the combustion coverage some of us need. One section of chapter 4 (Volume I)
covers “Combustion Systems,” providing fundamentals as well as practical coverage of burner tuning, types of burners, monitoring the process and sizing a combustion system. 

In Volume 2, chapter 9 is “Furnace Atmospheres,” which reviews all atmosphere options, including combustion reactions. Add this to all of the other practical advice offered in this two-volume reference book, and it’s worth obtaining a copy for yourself. You can order your own copy by going to www.industrialheating.com/AHT. You can currently save 50% on either or both volumes if you order soon.


Combustion Tool Kit

We previously produced this Tool Kit as an issue insert years ago. It includes some general engineering data, information on industrial gases, and fuels and flue data. The data included is evergreen, and the Tool Kit has been refreshed for this issue. You can link to it at www.industrialheating.com/CTK.


Industrial Heating Monthly 

Combustion is a regular topic covered in IH. Over the course of a year, it is specifically included in at least four different print issues. If you are looking for combustion-specific articles or other content, please search our website or locate “Combustion & Burners” or “Industrial Gases & Atmospheres” on our “Topics” tab. 

Looking at the most recent atmosphere/combustion articles, we find the following:

  • “Direct-Fired Gas Burners for High Temperature Applications” (Oct. 2019)
  • “Endothermic Generator FAQs” (Aug. 2019; a top-10 article in 2019)
  • “The State of the Natural Gas Market” (June 2019)
  • “Meeting Increasingly Strict NOx Emissions Standards” (May 2019)


Industry Publications

We will list several publications that address combustion starting with the most recent and working backward.


Thermal Systems Design: A Most Practical Guidebook

Written by Richard Martin (PhD, PE, CFI) in 2018, this is a great resource for readers. Rick is known by our audience from past connections, but he recently did a webinar with us on NFPA 86. If you did not see it, you can still register and watch it online.

Thermal Systems Design provides a thorough summary of the thermosciences and a variety of practical design examples based on the author’s experience in the field. While it is a great textbook, seasoned engineering practitioners are also finding it to be a helpful addition to their libraries. The first four chapters cover thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, heat transfer and combustion. The ensuing chapters apply this subject matter in system-design applications.

By relying on the author’s significant experience with system failure analysis, the book also provides the reader with examples of how to avoid design problems in thermal systems. Martin places a significant emphasis on the engineer’s use of process drawings (e.g., process-flow diagrams, piping and instrumentation diagrams) to communicate the thermal system’s design details. You can find it in our online bookstore.


Energy Management for the Metals Industry

Written by Cynthia Belt, this 2017 CRC Press resource is also relatively new. A 205-page, soft-cover book aimed at managers, engineers and supervisors working in the metals industry, it offers specifics that can help readers in our industry achieve energy savings for their companies. This book:

  • Emphasizes information crucial to the metals industry
  • Describes the benefits and reasons for starting an energy-management program and what you need to start one
  • Covers defining and measuring performance, setting baselines and benchmarking a plant and its processes
  • Discusses analyzing data, identifying projects, improving processes, setting goals and creating an action plan
  • Covers controlling and evaluating progress
  • Helps the reader understand energy measurements including electricity, natural gas and critical KPIs
  • Includes real-world examples and warns of potential pitfalls

No stranger to IH readers, Belt contributed an article titled “Save Money by Optimizing Your Furnace Burner Fire Rate.” It can be found in the April 2014 online archives.


Experimental Combustion – An Introduction

This 2014 text from CRC Press strives to help readers understand the basic skills of combustion in order for them to design and develop energy-efficient and low-emission combustion systems that can meet heating demands while minimizing ecological impacts.

Like Combustion Engineering, it is intended to be used as a textbook, and it offers both review questions and problems at the end of each chapter. This one seems a bit too theoretical for many of our readers, but I’m sure it could be of use for a portion of our audience.


Combustion Engineering (second edition)

The second edition of Combustion Engineering (2011) from CRC Press adds information on efficiency improvements, emission reductions and biomass utilization. The book provides a balance of combustion fundamentals and combustion-engineering applications of gaseous, liquid and solid fuels.

Eight chapters address the fundamentals of combustion, and the remaining eight chapters apply these fundamentals to furnaces, fixed-bed and fluidized-bed combustion and more. Numerous tables include practical data and formulae as well as extensive example problems, chapter-end problems and references.


The John Zink Hamworthy Combustion Handbook

The John Zink Hamworthy Combustion Handbook (2001) was significantly revised from a single volume to three volumes.

Volume 1 (from CRC Press) covers the fundamentals. It provides concepts and up-to-date information on industrial combustion science and engineering. I personally own this volume, and it contains many color illustrations and photos to help explain its contents.

Volume 2 is titled “Design and Operations,” and it provides a definitive “field manual” for operators, engineers and managers working in industrial combustion-oriented industries. Coverage includes testing, installation, maintenance and troubleshooting of combustion systems. It includes more than 600 color illustrations and photographs.

Volume 3, titled “Applications,” appears to cover applications that would be low in temperature for the readers of Industrial Heating. Suffice to say, however, the latest, much-expanded revision of this handbook should be able to assist you with many of your combustion-related challenges.



Our objective in this article is to present you with some combustion-related reference resources. If you simply search our website (www.industrialheating.com) for “combustion,” you will find over 900 results. The term “burner” leads to almost 700 results. Clearly, our website provides a very useful source of information on this and many other topics of interest in the field we call industrial heating.  

For more information:  Contact Reed Miller, editor, Industrial Heating, Manor Oak One, Suite #450, 1910 Cochran Rd., Pgh., PA 15220; tel: 412-306-4360; fax: 248-502-2099; e-mail: reed@industrialheating.com; web: www.industrialheating.com.