Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) simulation of a staged pressurized oxy-coal combustion (SPOC)


Staged pressurized oxy-coal combustion (SPOC), which is a promising technology being developed at the Washington University at St. Louis (WUSTL) aiming to be used for low-cost, low-emission, high-efficiency power generation, is investigated numerically using the ANSYS Fluent commercial package. The modelling supports the WUSTL experimental endeavors in a 100 kW lab-scale reactor, with 90% of energy coming from the coal and 10% originating from methane-air combustion. To be specific about the burner design, carbon dioxide is injected alongside the coal, for its carriage. In addition, a small amount of methane is also injected alongside the coal to maintain a steady flame. Steady and unsteady Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) simulations are performed resulting in an asymmetric flame shape. We propose several potential causes of such a flame asymmetry including peculiarities of the coal injection and the onset of the shear-layer instability occurring because the densities and velocities of the mixing streams. As a result, an influence of the presence of coal on the flame symmetry is demonstrated. In addition, a benchmark at which the further increase of coal would result in flame asymmetry has been found.This work is performed in cooperation with the Washington University at St. Louis (WUSTL). It is sponsored by the US Department of Energy (DoE) through the US-China Clean Energy Research Center – Advanced Coal Technology Consortium (CERC-ACTC).

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