Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Low emission combustor technology

In this project, the combustion conditions in future aero engines were predicted, the pollution levels on the basis of todays technology were assessed and fundamental processes of pollutant formation were investigated. Finally, 3 promising combustion concepts were identified for application in advanced aero engines although they differ in nitrogen oxide reduction potential, development effort and in technological risk involved. In order to assess the likely emissions from future aircraft gas turbines, a database was established containing information on the combustor inlet conditions for 6 different engine categories. To predict the future nitrogen oxide levels which would be generated by current combustor technology at these future conditions, empirical correlations were applied using the input from the combustor inlet conditions database. Based on the combustor entry conditions for future engines, various pollution reduction methods were selected and critically analyzed. A coordinated series of experimental and theoretical studies was carried out to investigate fundamental aspects of combustion.
This involved studies of:
fuel atomisation;
capabilities of laser diagnostics;
influence of primary zone geometry and stoichiometry;
influence of primary zone homogeneity;
smoke production in rich burning primary zones;
optimisation of a small engine premix duct.
3 different promising combustion concepts were identified:
the double annular combustor (DAC);
the lean premixed and prevaporized combustor (LPP);
the rich burn, quick quench and lean burn combustor (RQL). The lowest nitrogen oxide reduction potential was identified with the lean combustion method without premixing in a staged combustor design (DAC). The LLP concept is expected to reduce nitrogen oxide by more than 75%. The major problems deal with autoignition and flashback. The RQL method tends to provide a smaller nitrogen oxide reduction potential and a smaller technical risk than the LPP method.

Reported by

MTU Motoren- und Turbinen- Union Muenchen GmbH
Dachauerstrasse 665
80995 Muenchen
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