Heat Transfer and Flow Characteristic Study in a Low Emission Annular Combustor

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Virginia Tech

Modern Dry Low Emissions (DLE) combustors are characterized by highly swirling and expanding flows that makes the convective heat load on the combustor liner gas side difficult to predict and estimate. A coupled experimental-numerical study of swirling flow and its effects on combustor liner heat transfer inside a DLE annular combustor model is presented. A simulated scaled up annular combustor shell was designed with a generic fuel nozzle provided by Solar Turbines to create the swirl in the flow. The experiment was simulated with a cold flow and heated walls. An infrared camera was used to obtain the temperature distribution along the liner wall. Experimentally measured pressure distributions were compared with the heat transfer results. The experiment was conducted at various Reynolds Numbers to investigate the effect on the heat transfer peak locations and pressure distributions. A CFD study was performed using Fluent and turbulence models and used to corroborate and verify the experimental results. Results show that the heat transfer enhancement in the annulus has slightly different characteristics for the concave and convex walls. Results also show a much slower drop in heat transfer coefficient enhancement with increasing Reynolds number compared to can combustors from a previous study. An introductory study of the effect of a soft wall on the heat transfer on the combustor liner is also presented.

dry low emissions, infrared thermal imaging, swirler, combustor liner cooling