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Modal dynamics of self-excited azimuthal instabilities in an annular combustion chamber

Worth, NA and Dawson, JR (2013) Modal dynamics of self-excited azimuthal instabilities in an annular combustion chamber. Combustion and Flame, 160. pp. 2476-2489. ISSN 0010-2180

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Abstract

In this paper we describe the time-varying amplitude and its relation to the global heat release rate of self-excited azimuthal instabilities in a simple annular combustor operating under atmospheric conditions. The combustor was modular in construction consisting of either 12, 15 or 18 equally spaced premixed bluff-body flames around a fixed circumference, enabling the effect of large-scale interactions between adjacent flames to be investigated. High-speed OH* chemiluminescence imaged from above the annulus and pressure measurements obtained at multiple locations around the annulus revealed that the limit cycles of the modes are degenerate in so much as they undergo continuous transitions between standing and spinning modes in both clockwise (CW) and anti-clockwise (ACW) directions but with the same resonant frequency. Similar behaviour has been observed in LES simulations which suggests that degenerate modes may be a characteristic feature of self-excited azimuthal instabilities in annular combustion chambers. By modelling the instabilities as two acoustic waves of time-varying amplitude travelling in opposite directions we demonstrate that there is a statistical prevalence for either standing m=1 or spinning m=±1 modes depending on flame spacing, equivalence ratio, and swirl configuration. Phase-averaged OH* chemiluminescence revealed a possible mechanism that drives the direction of the spinning modes under limit-cycle conditions for configurations with uniform swirl. By dividing the annulus into inner and outer annular regions it was found that the spin direction coincided with changes in the spatial distribution of the peak heat release rate relative to the direction of the bulk swirl induced along the annular walls. For standing wave modes it is shown that the globally integrated fluctuations in heat release rate vary in magnitude along the acoustic mode shape with negligible contributions at the pressure nodes and maximum contributions at the pressure anti-nodes. © 2013.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Annular combustion chamber Azimuthal instabilities Circumferential instabilities Flame-flame interactions Spinning modes Standing modes
Subjects: UNSPECIFIED
Divisions: Div A > Fluid Mechanics
Depositing User: Cron Job
Date Deposited: 07 Mar 2014 11:45
Last Modified: 22 Dec 2014 01:20
DOI: 10.1016/j.combustflame.2013.04.031