Powder Technology, Vol.355, 201-212, 2019
Study of particle residence time in a pressurized fluidized bed with in-bed heat exchanger tubes
Anthropogenic climate change is amongst the greatest of challenges to human civilization. A key area that will play a large role in mitigating its effects are clean fossil fuel applications. Clean coal combustion can be achieved with an oxygen-fired pressurized fluidized bed combustor incorporating carbon capture and storage. In relation to pressurized fluidization processes, understanding the influence of pressure on fluidized bed hydrodynamics and, in turn, their effect on parameters including fuel residence time is essential. For the combustor under consideration here, a fraction of the heat exchanger boiler tubes are submerged in the fluidized bed such that the effect of the horizontal tube bundle on the fuel residence time is of great importance. The main focus of the present work was to evaluate the impact of gas velocity, pressure, presence or absence of a horizontal tube bundle and fuel feed rate on the average fuel residence time in a dense gas-solid fluidized bed. Experiments were conducted under cold flow conditions in a pressurized fluidized bed with an inner diameter of 0.15 m. The fluidization material was large glass beads (1.0 mm in diameter) while fuel particles were simulated with smaller glass beads (64 and 83 mu m in Sauter mean diameter) that were susceptible to entrainment. Operating pressures and superficial gas velocities were maintained between 1013 and 1200 kPa and 1.5 and 3.2 U-mf, respectively. To simulate continuous fuel injection, experiments were conducted with the fuel surrogate particles being continuously fed to the fluidized bed of large particles over a desired period of time. Downstream, entrained particles were captured to determine the average entrainment rate and average mass of fuel particles inside the fluidized bed at steady state, which yielded the average fuel residence time. The combination of elevated pressure with the tube bundle present was found to have the most influential impact when compared to base conditions of atmospheric pressure and with no tube bundle present. It was found to enhance gas bubble break up and reduce the average gas bubble size substantially. In turn, this increased the average residence time of 83 mu m particles by nearly three-fold in comparison to the case of atmospheric pressure with no tube bundle present. The effect of gas velocity on particle residence time was not found to be statistically significant under the range tested. Similarly, the effect of increasing fuel feed rate by 50% had no statistically significant impact. (C) 2019 Published by Elsevier B.V.