Combustion Technology
Within the design process of combustion systems special attention should be given to the emission behavior and stability of the flame. Especially the reduction of NOx emissions by application of the premixing technology represents a challenging task, since such a technology is often related with the appearance of combustion instabilities and oscillations that might lead to significant mechanical damage and hazard on humans and environment. Thus, it is of highest importance to analyze and understand emission and stability behavior of combustion systems at an early stage of the design process.

B&B-AGEMA applies modern numerical methods to simulate and analyze combustion processes, taking into account complex interactions between mixing processes, chemical kinetics and flame dynamics. By application of a validated advanced in-house Code the oscillation behavior of gas turbine combustors can be predicted with highest accuracy, so that the so called "humming" phenomena can be detected and avoided within the design process.

Such analyses can be supported by experimental investigations, which can be conducted in collaboration with our partners at RWTH Aachen University. On the gas turbine combustor test rig real operating conditions can be established with an air supply pressure up to 30 bar and air inlet temperature up to 550 °C.

Combustor Design/Improvement/Analysis

Transient Lean Blow Out (LBO) CFD Simulation of a F-Class gas turbine can combustor
CFD-Based combustion simulations build a core competence of B&B-AGEMA since more than 20 years and are continuously extended and improved in order to provide the most modern and precise methods to our clients. Additionally, the simulation based design work is always backed by the knowledge of our industrial experts.
  • Combustors for industrial gas turbines and aero engines
  • Feasibility, concept (design from scratch) and detail designs (incl. manufacturing drawings)
  • Thermodynamic base calculations and cycle modeling (incl. operation curve/envelope consideration w. Secondary Air System (SAS) parameters)
  • Flow and reaction Simulations
    • 0D / 1D Network & Chemical Reactor Modelling
    • 3D Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD)
      • Flame Shape and Temperature distribution
      • Thermal load of components (Conjugate Heat Transfer method)
      • Transient flame bahaviour (e.g. for ignition or Lean Blow Off (LBO))
      • Osciallation simulations (e.g. LES or Helmholtz solver)
      • Combustor outlet temperature and flow profile (Turbine Pattern Factor)
      • Emission prediction and reduction
      • Liquid Spray break-up and evaporation (Langrangian Multiphase)
      • Wobbe Index analysis
      • Hydrogen combustion
    • Structural Integrity and failure analysis
      • Finite Element Method (FEM)
      • Temperature & Stress load life prediction (Creep, LCF, TMF, HCF)
      • Modal analysis and direct frequency response
  • Prediction/Analysis of thermoacoustic oscillations („humming“; in-house tool CSC)

Special focus: 100% Hydrogen dry low NOx combustors

100 % H2 micromix combustor
Left: 3D reactive simulation; Right: Combustor module for gas turbine application
We are developing combustors/burners for Hydrogen since 2010 and are proud that the Dry-Low NOx Micromix technology is firing the world’s first 100 % H2 capable industrial gas turbine in the port of Kobe, Japan. Today we apply our experience and knowledge not only to industrial gas turbines but also aero engines and burners for the steel and process industry in order to make our contribution to a decarbonized world!
READ MORE about our Hydrogen experience

Retrofit design for industrial gas turbine combustor replacements

Holistic combustor design competence

(Picture: Courtesy Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd., JP)

Adjustment of entire gas turbine subsystems requires an holistic view on the machine and broad knowledge. As an independent engineering service provider, B&B-AGEMA has long-year experiences with different gas turbine designs. We can offer a unique package by combining expert knowledge with modern design tools and engineering excellence.
  • Feasibility analysis / proof of concept
  • Thermodynamic modeling (in-house tool GTPsim)
  • Material selection
  • Compressor diffuser (re-)design
  • Mid-section casing (re-)design (incl. transient & steady state stress calculations, flange design, thermal matching between rotor and casing)
  • Transition piece (re-)design (incl. sealing configurations)
  • fuel distribution system layout
  • Engineering drawings and manufacturing support

Experimental test support

Natural Gas blow-off after high pressure testing of a 27 MWth gas turbine combustor
Despite the improvement of simulation techniques, experimental testing of combustors under real engine conditions is still indispensable - especially due to the fact that thermodynamic and thermoacoustic behavior cannot be scaled. Therefore, experimental test support completes our engineering services and proves our design capabilities.
  • Containment and flow box design
  • Instrumentation selection and integration support
  • Test strategy preparation (philosophy, operation point matrix, machine operation concept consideration)
  • Result monitoring and analysis (supported by numerical simulations)
  • Effective area, shakedown and hot tests support
  • Wobbe Index screening
  • Hydrogen admixture test support
  • Declaration of Conformity preparation support (PED, TüV)

Measurement/Monitoring Equipment

Latest generation of an air cooled flame visualization borescope for infrared and visible light
We develop/improve measurement devices for experimental testing since the 1990s in collaboration with IDG, RWTH Aachen.
  • Air cooled borescope for flame visualization
    • Air cooled for gas turbine safety
    • Visual light (VIS) and Infrared (IR, thermal imaging)
    • Max. combustor temperature: 1350°C
    • Max. combustor pressure: 11-20 bar(a) (depending on type)
    • Diameter 22-38mm (depending on type)
    • Direction of View (DOV): 0°, 70°, 90°
    • Field of Vision (FOV): 56°, 70°, 90° (depending on DOV)
    • Length: 110-1160 mm
  • Wireless temperature sensors based on SAW-Technology in order to allow higher number of sensors and avoid the wiring -> faster configuration change, more reliable data acquisition (on research level; READ MORE)

Special burners (e.g. for coating tests)

Left: auxiliary firing burners in an GT exhaust for temperature increase upstream of an heat recovery steam genartor (HRSG)
Right: Jet-A1 spray combustion simulation with conjugate liner temperature prediction for an experimental test rig combustor
  • Auxiliary firing burners for recovery boiler
  • Experimental test burners (e.g. for TBC coating evaluation (T_outlet<1700°C, M_outlet< 0.8))
  • Process industry burners (exhaust gas recirculation (EGR), MILD)