An Investigation of Lean Premixed Hydrogen Combustion in a Gas Turbine Engine
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The strong lean combustion stability of hydrogen-air flames is due primarily to high reaction rates and the associated high turbulent burning velocities. While this is advantageous at low equivalence ratios, it presents a significant danger of flashbackâ the upstream propagation of the flame into the premixing deviceâ at higher equivalence ratios. An investigation has been conducted into the operation of a specific hydrogen-air premixer design in a gas turbine engine. Laboratory tests were first conducted to determine the upper stability limits of a single premixer. Tests were then carried out in which eighteen premixers and a custom-fabricated combustor liner were installed in a modified Pratt and Whitney Canada PT6A-20 turboprop engine. The tests examined the premixer and engine operability as a result of the modifications. A computer cycle analysis model was created to help analyze and predict the behavior of the modified engine and premixers. The model, which uses scaled component maps to predict off-design engine performance, was integral in the analysis of premixer flashback which limited the operation of the modified engine.
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