Investigation of turbulent pulverized solid fuel combustion with detailed homogeneous and heterogeneous kinetics

Bosen Wang, Ali Shamooni, Oliver T. Stein, Andreas Kronenburg, Andreas M. Kempf, Paulo Amaral Debiagi, Christian Hasse

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


A comprehensive EulerâLagrange framework for pulverized coal combustion using detailed multi-step heterogeneous kinetics is presented. The heterogeneous kinetics employ the POLIMI model that involves 37 species (22 solid species and 15 gas species) and 49 reactions to describe detailed pyrolysis as well as char oxidation, gasification, and annealing for a wide range of coals. The porous structure of the coal particles is considered, and the heterogeneous reactions are assumed to occur throughout the entire particle in a volume-based approach. The ordinary differential equations of the heterogeneous kinetics are integrated on each Lagrangian coal particle and predict the conversion of the raw coal components to light volatile hydrocarbons, heavy tar species, and char off-gases. Hence, the composition of the solid fuel components and the released gas changes dynamically in space and time, providing high-fidelity predictions of solid fuel combustion. The chemical conversion of the released species in the gas phase is described by a homogeneous kinetic mechanism with 76 species and 973 reactions that was reduced from the comprehensive CRECK-G-1407 kinetic mechanism. The new modeling framework is employed within carrier-phase direct numerical simulations (CP-DNS) of pulverized coal combustion in a three-dimensional turbulent mixing layer. This configuration includes the additional physics of turbulence and particle group combustion by mixing solid fuel particles suspended in a primary oxidizer stream with the products from lean volatile combustion in a secondary stream. The CP-DNS results are analyzed with and without the available set of 14 char conversion reactions, and a low degree of char conversion indicated by an increased rate of CO production is captured for particles with temperatures higher than 1800 K. The CP-DNS results from the detailed POLIMI approach feature a distinct bimodal shape of the volatile release curve and multi-regime combustion. The POLIMI data are used to evaluate the predictive capability of simpler pyrolysis models. The original competing two-step model (C2SM) by Kobayashi is investigated and shown to predict heavily delayed ignition. A new competing two-step devolatilization approach is proposed as an alternative model reduction suitable for fitting bimodal volatile release rates, such as that predicted by POLIMI. The CP-DNS using the alternative pyrolysis model faithfully captures the onset of ignition and multi-regime flame branches. Differences arise in the local tar species compositions in the gas phase as a result of the time-varying (POLIMI) and fixed (new C2SM) volatile compositions for the respective models. The flame structure is further analyzed by chemical explosive mode analysis (CEMA), and the occurrence of premixed and non-premixed flames zones is confirmed, whereas a simpler flame index analysis fails to correctly indicate the multi-regime nature of the flame. This recognition of multi-regime combustion serves as a guidance for selecting suitable conditioning variables for flamelet and other combustion submodels in large eddy simulation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7077-7091
Number of pages15
JournalEnergy and Fuels
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 6 May 2021
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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