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Impact of Internal Entrainment on High Intensity Distributed Combustion

[+] Author Affiliations
Ahmed E. E. Khalil, Ashwani K. Gupta

University of Maryland, College Park, MD

Paper No. POWER2015-49034, pp. V001T03A002; 7 pages
  • ASME 2015 Power Conference collocated with the ASME 2015 9th International Conference on Energy Sustainability, the ASME 2015 13th International Conference on Fuel Cell Science, Engineering and Technology, and the ASME 2015 Nuclear Forum
  • ASME 2015 Power Conference
  • San Diego, California, USA, June 28–July 2, 2015
  • Conference Sponsors: Power Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5660-4
  • Copyright © 2015 by ASME


Colorless Distributed Combustion (also referred to as CDC) has been shown to provide ultra-low emissions and enhanced performance of high intensity gas turbine combustors. To achieve distributed combustion, the flowfield needs to be tailored for adequate mixing between reactants and hot reactive species from within the combustor to result in high temperature low oxygen concentration environment prior to ignition. Such reaction distribution results in uniform thermal field and also eliminates any hot spots for mitigating NOx emission. Though CDC have been extensively studied using a variety of geometries, heat release intensities, and fuels, the role of internally recirculated hot reactive gases needs to be further investigated and quantified. In this paper, the impact of internal entrainment of reactive gases on flame structure and behavior is investigated with focus on fostering distributed combustion and providing guidelines for designing future gas turbine combustors operating in distributed combustion mode. To simulate the recirculated gases from within the combustor, a mixture of nitrogen and carbon dioxide is introduced to the air stream prior to mixing with fuel and subsequent combustion. Increase in the amounts of nitrogen and carbon dioxide (simulating increased entrainment), led to volume distributed reaction over a larger volume in the combustor with enhanced and uniform distribution of the OH* chemiluminescence intensity. At the same time, the bluish flame stabilized by the swirler is replaced with a more uniform almost invisible bluish flame. The increased recirculation also reflected on the pollutants emission, where NO emissions were significantly decreased for the same amount of fuel burned. Lowering oxygen concentration from 21% to 15% (due to increased recirculation) resulted in 80∼90% reduction in NO with no impact on CO emission with sub PPM NO emission achieved at an equivalence ratio of 0.7. Flame stabilization at excess recirculation can be achieved using preheated nitrogen and carbon dioxide, achieving true distributed conditions with oxygen concentration below 13%.

Copyright © 2015 by ASME
Topics: Combustion



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