Biomass gasification is nowadays considered a viable option for clean energy production. Furthermore, still more efforts need to be spent to make this technology fully available at commercial scale. Drawbacks that greatly limit the full‐time plant availability—and so its economically feasibility—mainly concerns syngas purification by contaminants such as tars. Different technological approaches were investigated over last two decades with the aim to increase both the plant availability and the overall efficiency by keeping, at the same time, CAPEX and OPEX low. Among technologies, fluidized beds are surely the most promising architectures for power production at thermal scale above 1 MWth. Gasifier can be surely considered the key component of the whole power plant and its proper design, the main engineering effort. This process involves different engineering aspects: thermo‐structural, heat, and mass transfer, and chemical and fluid-dynamic concerns being the most important. In this study, with the aim to reach an optimal reaction chamber design, the hydrodynamics of a bubbling fluidized bed reactor was investigated by using a CFD approach. A Eulerian–Eulerian multiphase model, supported by experimental data, was implemented to describe the interactions between the solid and fluid phases inside the reactor while a discrete dense phase model (DDPM) model was considered to investigate momentum exchange among continuous phases and solid particles simulating char. Different process parameters, such as the bed recirculation rate and the particles circulation time inside the bed, were at least analyzed to characterize the hydrodynamics of the reactor. Results indicate that the recirculation time of bed material is in the order of 6–7 s at bench scale and, respectively, of 15–20 s at full scale. Information about solid particles inside the bed that should be used to avoid elutriation and agglomeration phenomenon, suggest that the dimension of the mother fuel particles should not exceed the value of 5–10 mm.

CFD hydrodynamics investigations for optimum biomass gasifier design

Fanelli E.
2020

Abstract

Biomass gasification is nowadays considered a viable option for clean energy production. Furthermore, still more efforts need to be spent to make this technology fully available at commercial scale. Drawbacks that greatly limit the full‐time plant availability—and so its economically feasibility—mainly concerns syngas purification by contaminants such as tars. Different technological approaches were investigated over last two decades with the aim to increase both the plant availability and the overall efficiency by keeping, at the same time, CAPEX and OPEX low. Among technologies, fluidized beds are surely the most promising architectures for power production at thermal scale above 1 MWth. Gasifier can be surely considered the key component of the whole power plant and its proper design, the main engineering effort. This process involves different engineering aspects: thermo‐structural, heat, and mass transfer, and chemical and fluid-dynamic concerns being the most important. In this study, with the aim to reach an optimal reaction chamber design, the hydrodynamics of a bubbling fluidized bed reactor was investigated by using a CFD approach. A Eulerian–Eulerian multiphase model, supported by experimental data, was implemented to describe the interactions between the solid and fluid phases inside the reactor while a discrete dense phase model (DDPM) model was considered to investigate momentum exchange among continuous phases and solid particles simulating char. Different process parameters, such as the bed recirculation rate and the particles circulation time inside the bed, were at least analyzed to characterize the hydrodynamics of the reactor. Results indicate that the recirculation time of bed material is in the order of 6–7 s at bench scale and, respectively, of 15–20 s at full scale. Information about solid particles inside the bed that should be used to avoid elutriation and agglomeration phenomenon, suggest that the dimension of the mother fuel particles should not exceed the value of 5–10 mm.
Biomass gasification
Clean energy production
Cold model testing
Fluid dynamics investigation
Fluidized bed modeling
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12079/56801
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