• IFRF research team activity

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During the first two months of 2012 the IFRF research team at Livorno has been involved in several different projects. The main work areas are: RELCOM, H2 Low-NOX gas turbine burner development, Biomass combustion, probes development and IPFR revamping for oxy-combustion. This article presents a brief description of these projects and an overview of the experimental tasks currently ongoing at the Livorno Research Facilities.

The members of the IFRF Research Team in Livorno are: Giovanni Coraggio, senior investigator; Leonardo Biasci, investigator, and Marco Faleni, senior technician.  Three students of the Pisa University, two masters and one bachelor, are currently doing their thesis at the IFRF.  Two more masters students will start their cooperation with IFRF on March.


For RELCOM (Reliable and Efficient Combustion of Oxygen/Coal/Recycled Flue Gas Mixtures) the IFRF research team has been involved in two main research activities.
The first task is to collect in a report all the information about the burners that will be used in the experimental campaigns of the project. This document will also contain a description of the IFRF AASB and CIUDEN burners and their characteristics.
Within the framework of Relcom, IFRF is also setting up, together with IEn, the task leader, and the other partners, the characterization of three coals in oxy –combustion environment with the IPFR (Isothermal Plug Flow Reactor). The first tests are planned to start in March/April 2012.

GT H2 burner development

Within the project “Sviluppo di un combustore ultra-low NOx per idrogeno” (Development of an ultra-low NOx burner for hydrogen), IFRF recently began the design and manufacture of a “micro-pyrometer”. The micro-pyrometer will be used on the ENEL’s TAO facility to carry out temperature measurements. TAO (Turbogas con Accessi Ottici – Turbogas with windows for optical analysis) is a test rig for gas turbine development. The measurement section is less than 30cm long, hence the pyrometer shield diameter has to be small to perform reliable measurements. To reduce the probe interferences in the aerodynamic field, only one shield over the pyrometer sheath will be used, a 7.5 mm diameter shield already available in the IFRF stock.  Some on-field tests are already planned to check the instrument performance.

Pyrometer shields.jpg

Figure 1: Three sizes of IFRF external pyrometer shields. The bigger one is used for FOSPER and 500kW furnace measurements; the middle one is used in the IPFR and the smaller one will be used in TAO.

IPFR: Oxy combustion commissioning

In January, IPFR’s performance was increased with a new feeding system for CO2 and Oxygen for oxy-combustion tests. In the next two weeks the final commissioning with coal and biomass will take place. The supervision system was developed and updated in order to control all the process variables and gas mixtures percentages from the control room.

IPFR Co2 massflow controller.jpg
Figure 2: IPFR CO2 lines massflow controls

500 kW Furnace

In 2011 IFRF worked together with ENEL on the revamping of the ENEL 500kW furnace. After the completion of this phase this rig is again fully operational and in line with the new safety regulations.  In February 2012 the first part of fouling tests with coal and biomass mixture was performed.  The burner swirler set was adjusted by pyrometer in-flame measurements to avoid local temperature peak.  The IFRF team was in charge of temperature measurements inside the combustion chamber and the management of the biomass feeding system.  Next month the second part of the fouling test with increased coal-biomass mixture will take place.

500 kw control room.jpg
Figure 3: 500kW furnace control room

Probes development

The development of IFRF probes is ongoing.  During the period under review, some changes to the quartz tip probe and its sampling system were made in order to improve the handiness of the instrument and to achieve a further reduction of the possible sources of air-in leakage.

For any further information on the IFRF research team activity, please feel free to get in touch with us (http://www.ifrf.net/staff/).