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Research Papers: Fuel Combustion

Experimental Study on the Effect of Hydrogen Enrichment of Methane on the Stability and Emission of Nonpremixed Swirl Stabilized Combustor

[+] Author and Article Information
Yinka S. Sanusi

Department Mechanical Engineering,
King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals,
Dhahran 31261, Saudi Arabia
e-mail: sanusi@kfupm.edu.sa

Mohamed A. Habib

Professor
Department Mechanical Engineering,
King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals,
Dhahran 31261, Saudi Arabia
e-mail: mahabib@kfupm.edu.sa

Esmail M. A. Mokheimer

Professor
Department Mechanical Engineering,
King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals,
Dhahran 31261, Saudi Arabia
e-mail: esmailm@kfupm.edu.sa

Contributed by the Advanced Energy Systems Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENERGY RESOURCES TECHNOLOGY. Manuscript received July 27, 2014; final manuscript received September 13, 2014; published online October 23, 2014. Editor: Hameed Metghalchi.

J. Energy Resour. Technol 137(3), 032203 (Oct 23, 2014) (9 pages) Paper No: JERT-14-1229; doi: 10.1115/1.4028699 History: Received July 27, 2014; Revised September 13, 2014

An ultra lean mixture (ϕ ≤ 0.5) of methane–hydrogen–air was experimentally investigated to explore the effect of fuel flexibility on the flame stability and emission of a nonpremixed swirl stabilized combustor. In order to isolate the effect of hydrogen addition to methane, experiments were carried out at fixed fuel energy input to the combustor while increasing the hydrogen content from 0% up to 50% in the methane–hydrogen mixture on volume basis. The combustor fuel energy was then increased up to the range of typical gas turbine combustors. Equivalence ratio sweep was carried out to determine the lean stability limit of the combustor. Results show that the hydrogen content in the fuel mixture and fuel energy input have a coupled effect on the combustor lean blow off velocity (LBV), temperature and emissions. The LBV increases by ∼103% with the addition of 30% H2. On the other hand, the LBV increases by ∼20% as the fuel energy increases from 1.83 MW/m3 to 2.75 MW/m3. Burning under ultra lean condition serves two purposes. (1) The excess air supplied reduces the overall combustor temperature with its ensuing effect on low NOx formation. (2) It increases the overall combustor volume flow rate which reduces the residence time for NOx formation. The axial temperature profile presented along with the emission data can serve as basis for the validation of numerical models. This would give more insight onto the effect of hydrogen on the turbulence level and how it would improve the localized extinction of methane in a cost-effective way.

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Figures

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Fig. 1

Schematic diagram of the experimental set up of a gas turbine model combustor

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Fig. 3

Effect of hydrogen content on the LBO equivalence ratio

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Fig. 4

Effect of fuel energy input supplied on the LBO equivalence ratio

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Fig. 5

Effect of hydrogen content on the LBV

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Fig. 6

(a) Comparison of the observed and predicted LBV at different hydrogen content and (b) comparison of the observed and predicted LBV at different hydrogen content

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Fig. 7

Effect of the Hydrogen content on the flame structure at 3.67 MW/m3

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Fig. 8

Effect of fuel energy on the flame structure at 50% H2

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Fig. 9

Effect of fuel energy on the axial temperature profile of the combustor (a) 0% H2: equivalence ratio = 0.5, (b) 50% H2: equivalence ratio = 0.5, and (c) 50% H2: equivalence ratio = 0.25

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Fig. 10

Effect of H2 content on the axial temperature profile of the combustor (a) 3.67 MW/m3: equivalence ratio = 0.5 and (b) 3.67 MW/m3: equivalence ratio = 0.4

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Fig. 11

Axial temperature profile at different equivalence ratio and 3.67 MW/m 3:50% H2

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Fig. 12

Average combustor temperature

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Fig. 13

NOx emissions at 4.59 MW/m3. (a) Effect of hydrogen content and (b) effect of ϕ.

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Fig. 14

Effect of fuel energy on NOx emissions at 50% H2

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