A study of combustion phenomena in circulating fluidized beds by developing and applying experimental and modelling methods for laboratory-scale reactors
Tourunen, Antti (2010-12-22)
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Lappeenranta University of Technology
The results shown in this thesis are based on selected publications of the 2000s decade. The work was carried out in several national and EC funded public research projects and in close cooperation with industrial partners. The main objective of the thesis was to study and quantify the most important phenomena of circulating fluidized bed combustors by developing and applying proper experimental and modelling methods using laboratory scale equipments. An understanding of the phenomena plays an essential role in the development of combustion and emission performance, and the availability and controls of CFB boilers. Experimental procedures to study fuel combustion behaviour under CFB conditions are presented in the thesis. Steady state and dynamic measurements under well controlled conditions were carried out to produce the data needed for the development of high efficiency, utility scale CFB technology. The importance of combustion control and furnace dynamics is emphasized when CFB boilers are scaled up with a once through steam cycle. Qualitative information on fuel combustion characteristics was obtained directly by comparing flue gas oxygen responses during the impulse change experiments with fuel feed. A one-dimensional, time dependent model was developed to analyse the measurement data Emission formation was studied combined with fuel combustion behaviour. Correlations were developed for NO, N2O, CO and char loading, as a function of temperature and oxygen concentration in the bed area. An online method to characterize char loading under CFB conditions was developed and validated with the pilot scale CFB tests. Finally, a new method to control air and fuel feeds in CFB combustion was introduced. The method is based on models and an analysis of the fluctuation of the flue gas oxygen concentration. The effect of high oxygen concentrations on fuel combustion behaviour was also studied to evaluate the potential of CFB boilers to apply oxygenfiring technology to CCS. In future studies, it will be necessary to go through the whole scale up chain from laboratory phenomena devices through pilot scale test rigs to large scale, commercial boilers in order to validate the applicability and scalability of the, results. This thesis shows the chain between the laboratory scale phenomena test rig (bench scale) and the CFB process test rig (pilot). CFB technology has been scaled up successfully from an industrial scale to a utility scale during the last decade. The work shown in the thesis, for its part, has supported the development by producing new detailed information on combustion under CFB conditions.
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