3D Simulation of Ammonia Combustion in a Lean Premixed Swirl Burner

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Abstract

To date, a number of mechanical, electrical, thermal, and chemical approaches have been developed for storing electrical energy for utility-scale services. The only sufficiently flexible mechanism allowing large quantities of energy to be stored over long time periods is chemical energy storage in the form of carbon or hydrogen. One chemical considered for hydrogen carriage that can potentially be employed for storage is ammonia. Ammonia can substitute pure hydrogen for storage and be employed for power generation at large industrial scale if the molecule is efficiently burned through mature equipment such as gas turbines, thus providing not only a carbon free fuel, but also a chemical capable of being stored at low energy requirements. Thus, progress on the use of ammonia in gas turbines is a main priority for groups working on the area. Studies need to be conducted in experimental rigs with strong CFD analyses for further industrial implementation. In this paper, modelling of ammonia combustion in a generic gas turbine combustor is explored in order to provide an effective tool for future application. Large Eddy Simulation approach was used to develop a model for ammonia/hydrogen combustion in gas turbine combustors. To capture more details of the turbulent reacting flow, a detailed chemical mechanism was selected for a deep insight. A Partially Stirred Reactor framework was utilized to deal with the turbulence/chemistry interaction. The developed model was then applied to the simulation of lean premixed ammonia/hydrogen flames in a generic swirl burner. A preliminary validation for the model is performed by correlation of NOx emission with experimental data. Results show the model can provide detailed information of flow field, flame structure, emissions, etc. It can be used to optimize the procedure of utilizing ammonia as a fuel in future equipment design.

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Xiao, H., Valera-Medina, A., Bowen, P., & Dooley, S. (2017). 3D Simulation of Ammonia Combustion in a Lean Premixed Swirl Burner. In Energy Procedia (Vol. 142, pp. 1294–1299). Elsevier Ltd. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.egypro.2017.12.504

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