Research Papers: Gas Turbines: Combustion, Fuels, and Emissions

Bioethanol Combustion in an Industrial Gas Turbine Combustor: Simulations and Experiments

[+] Author and Article Information
Joost L. H. P. Sallevelt

Department of Energy Technology,
University of Twente,
Enschede 7522 NB, Netherlands
e-mail: j.l.h.p.sallevelt@utwente.nl

Artur K. Pozarlik, Gerrit Brem

Department of Energy Technology,
University of Twente,
Enschede 7522 NB, Netherlands

Martin Beran, Lars-Uno Axelsson

OPRA Turbines,
Hengelo 7554 TS, Netherlands

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Combustion and Fuels Committee of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENGINEERING FOR GAS TURBINES AND POWER. Manuscript received December 11, 2013; final manuscript received January 20, 2014; published online February 18, 2014. Editor: David Wisler.

J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power 136(7), 071501 (Feb 18, 2014) (8 pages) Paper No: GTP-13-1448; doi: 10.1115/1.4026529 History: Received December 11, 2013; Revised January 20, 2014

Combustion tests with bioethanol and diesel as a reference have been performed in OPRA's 2 MWe class OP16 gas turbine combustor. The main purposes of this work are to investigate the combustion quality of ethanol with respect to diesel and to validate the developed CFD model for ethanol spray combustion. The experimental investigation has been conducted in a modified OP16 gas turbine combustor, which is a reverse-flow tubular combustor of the diffusion type. Bioethanol and diesel burning experiments have been performed at atmospheric pressure with a thermal input ranging from 29 to 59 kW. Exhaust gas temperature and emissions (CO, CO2, O2, NOx) were measured at various fuel flow rates while keeping the air flow rate and air temperature constant. In addition, the temperature profile of the combustor liner has been determined by applying thermochromic paint. CFD simulations have been performed with ethanol for five different operating conditions using ANSYS FLUENT. The simulations are based on a 3D RANS code. Fuel droplets representing the fuel spray are tracked throughout the domain while they interact with the gas phase. A liner temperature measurement has been used to account for heat transfer through the flame tube wall. Detailed combustion chemistry is included by using the steady laminar flamelet model. Comparison between diesel and bioethanol burning tests show similar CO emissions, but NOx concentrations are lower for bioethanol. The CFD results for CO2 and O2 are in good agreement, proving the overall integrity of the model. NOx concentrations were found to be in fair agreement, but the model failed to predict CO levels in the exhaust gas. Simulations of the fuel spray suggest that some liner wetting might have occurred. However, this finding could not be clearly confirmed by the test data.

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Fig. 1

Scheme of the test rig and the location of sensors

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Fig. 2

Final grid used for the simulations

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Fig. 3

Calculated droplet size distribution curve for the ethanol spray in Case 3

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Fig. 4

Dimensionless liner temperature limits from the paint test and the profile used for CFD

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Fig. 5

Dimensionless temperature field (a) and OH field (b) in Case 3, shown on a cross section of the combustor

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Fig. 6

Measured and calculated dimensionless exhaust gas temperatures as function of the overall equivalence ratio

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Fig. 7

Measured and calculated CO2 concentration as function of the overall equivalence ratio

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Fig. 8

Measured and calculated O2 concentration as function of the overall equivalence ratio

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Fig. 9

Measured dimensionless CO concentration as function of the overall equivalence ratio, normalized to 15% O2

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Fig. 10

Measured and calculated dimensionless NOx concentration as function of the overall equivalence ratio

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Fig. 11

Calculated droplet diameter as function of the droplet travel time in Case 3

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Fig. 12

Calculated square droplet diameter as function of the droplet travel time in Case 3

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Fig. 13

Image of the ethanol flame without (a) and with (b) CH*-filter in front of the camera



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