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Type: Journal article
Title: Impacts of a jet's exit flow pattern on mixing and combustion performance
Author: Nathan, G.
Mi, J.
Alwahabi, Z.
Newbold, G.
Nobes, D.
Citation: Progress in Energy and Combustion Science, 2006; 32(5-6):496-538
Publisher: Pergamon-Elsevier Science Ltd
Issue Date: 2006
ISSN: 0360-1285
Statement of
G.J. Nathan, J. Mi, Z.T. Alwahabi, G.J.R. Newbold and D.S. Nobes
Abstract: The influence of modifying a jet's exit flow pattern on both the near and far-field turbulent mixing processes and on the resulting combustion performance, is explored. This reveals that, in contradiction to some common assumptions, increasing the coherence of large-scale motions can decrease molecular mixing rates, and yet can still be beneficial in some applications. Even relatively minor changes to the exit flow pattern of a non-reacting round jet, through changes to the nozzle profile are found to propagate downstream into the far field, apparently through the underlying turbulent structure. Importantly, while a jet from a smoothly contracting nozzle is found to have higher rates of entrainment, mean spread and mean decay of the scalar field than does a long pipe jet, it has a lower rate of molecular mixing. That is, increased large-scale mixing does not necessarily result in increased fine-scale mixing. A range of devices are reviewed which enhance, or stimulate the large-scale, coherent motions in an emerging jet using acoustic, mechanical or fluidic methods. The available evidence suggests that those methods which induce instantaneously asymmetric flow structure are more effective at increasing the near-field spreading than are those which induce instantaneously axisymmetric flow structure. Only limited data are available of the effects of such near-field changes on the far-field properties. Nevertheless, the available data reveal a clear trend that this near-field flow undergoes a transition to a far-field state whose spread and decay is comparable with that of a steady jet, albeit being indelibly altered by the near-field excitation. It also suggests that “self-exciting” devices (i.e. that are not externally forced), cause a net reduction in the total entrainment relative to the unexcited jet, due to the losses induced by the device itself. Nevertheless, the changes which they can impart to the flow, such as redistributing the turbulent energy from the fine to the larger scales, can be beneficial for combustion in applications where high radiant heat transfer is desirable. Precessing and flapping jets are found to cause an increase in flame volume relative to an equivalent simple jet (SJ), implying lower molecular mixing rates. However, importantly, this decrease in mixing is achieved with no increase in the flame length. Rather the width to length ratio of these flames is increased significantly. This is of practical significance because the length of a flame is often the limiting dimension in industrial systems. The reduced strain-rates lead to an increased presence of soot within the flame, while not, in general, significantly influencing the emission of soot from the flame. The increased volume of soot leads to increased radiation, which in turn acts to reduce flame temperature, so lowering thermal NOx emissions through a global residence time–temperature reduction. For example, in full-scale cement kilns these burner nozzles are found to reduce NOx emissions by around 40–60% and increase fuel efficiency (or output) by around 5–10%.
Keywords: Jet mixing; Jet entrainment; Radiation; Thermal NOx emissions; Precessing jets; Self-excited jets.
RMID: 0020061705
DOI: 10.1016/j.pecs.2006.07.002
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Appears in Collections:Chemical Engineering publications
Environment Institute Leaders publications

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