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Optical Characterization of a Multipoint Lean Direct Injector for Gas Turbine Combustors: Velocity and Fuel Drop Size Measurements

[+] Author Affiliations
Christopher M. Heath, Yolanda R. Hicks, Robert C. Anderson

NASA Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, OH

Randy J. Locke

Arctic Slope Regional Corp., Inc., Cleveland, OH

Paper No. GT2010-22960, pp. 791-802; 12 pages
  • ASME Turbo Expo 2010: Power for Land, Sea, and Air
  • Volume 2: Combustion, Fuels and Emissions, Parts A and B
  • Glasgow, UK, June 14–18, 2010
  • Conference Sponsors: International Gas Turbine Institute
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4397-0 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3872-3


Performance of a multipoint, lean direct injection (MP-LDI) strategy for low emission aero-propulsion systems has been tested in a Jet-A fueled, lean flame tube combustion rig. Operating conditions for the series of tests included inlet air temperatures between 672 K and 828 K, pressures between 1034 kPa and 1379 kPa and total equivalence ratios between 0.41 and 0.45, resulting in equilibrium flame temperatures approaching 1800 K. Ranges of operation were selected to represent the spectrum of subsonic and supersonic flight conditions projected for the next-generation of commercial aircraft. This document reports laser-based measurements of in situ fuel velocities and fuel drop sizes for the NASA 9-point LDI hardware arranged in a 3 × 3 square grid configuration. Data obtained represent a region of the flame tube combustor with optical access that extends 38.1-mm downstream of the fuel injection site. All data were obtained within reacting flows, without particle seeding. Two diagnostic methods were employed to evaluate the resulting flow path. Three-component velocity fields have been captured using phase Doppler interferometry (PDI), and two-component velocity distributions using planar particle image velocimetry (PIV). Data from these techniques have also offered insight into fuel drop size and distribution, fuel injector spray angle and pattern, turbulence intensity, degree of vaporization and extent of reaction. This research serves to characterize operation of the baseline NASA 9-point LDI strategy for potential use in future gas-turbine combustor applications. An additional motive is the compilation of a comprehensive database to facilitate understanding of combustor fuel injector aerodynamics and fuel vaporization processes, which in turn may be used to validate computational fluid dynamics codes, such as the National Combustor Code (NCC), among others.



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