A preliminary study of the shape and the extinction characteristics of a diffusion flame established over a circular liquid fuel surface under the influence of an opposed air flow, is presented. Renewable liquid fuel such as ethanol is employed. A simple heterogeneous combustion setup, which consists of a cylindrical tube containing ethanol located at the bottom, is exposed to an opposed air flow from a coaxial circular pipe of same size located at the top at a fixed separation distance. Axial and radial extents of flame for different air flow rates are qualitatively analyzed. Burning rates of ethanol for different separation distances and air flow rates are recorded. For a fixed separation distance, at a particular air flow rate the flame extinction takes place. Extinction air flow rates and corresponding strain rates for different separation distances are presented. © 2008 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.