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RESEARCH PAPERS: Gas Turbines: Combustion and Fuels

An Efficient Computational Model for Premixed Turbulent Combustion at High Reynolds Numbers Based on a Turbulent Flame Speed Closure

[+] Author and Article Information
V. Zimont

CRS 4, via Nazario Sauro 10, 09123 Cagliari, Italy

W. Polifke, M. Bettelini, W. Weisenstein

ABB Corporate Research, Baden-Dättwil, Switzerland

J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power 120(3), 526-532 (Jul 01, 1998) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2818178 History: Received March 20, 1997; Online November 19, 2007

Abstract

Theoretical background, details of implementation, and validation results for a computational model for turbulent premixed gaseous combustion at high turbulent Reynolds numbers are presented. The model describes the combustion process in terms of a single transport equation for a progress variable; turbulent closure of the progress variable’s source term is based on a model for the turbulent flame speed. The latter is identified as a parameter of prime significance in premixed turbulent combustion and determined from theoretical considerations and scaling arguments, taking into account physico-chemical properties and local turbulent parameters of the combustible mixture. Specifically, phenomena like thickening, wrinkling, and straining of the flame front by the turbulent velocity field are considered, yielding a closed form expression for the turbulent flame speed that involves, e.g., speed, thickness, and critical gradient of a laminar flame, local turbulent length scale, and fluctuation intensity. This closure approach is very efficient and elegant, as it requires only one transport equation more than the non reacting flow case, and there is no need for costly evaluation of chemical source terms or integration over probability density functions. The model was implemented in a finite-volume-based computational fluid dynamics code and validated against detailed experimental data taken from a large-scale atmospheric gas turbine burner test stand. The predictions of the model compare well with the available experimental results. It has been observed that the model is significantly more robust and computationally efficient than other combustion models. This attribute makes the model particularly interesting for applications to large three-dimensional problems in complicated geometries.

Copyright © 1998 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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