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Comment Heat Transfer

A booster bed for Circulating Fluidized-bed Combustors

By Gerald Ondrey |

The efficiency of circulating fluidized-bed (CFB) combustors can be significantly increased by substituting conventional bed material with an ilmenite-based bed material, according to researchers at Chalmers University of Technology (Gothenburg, Sweden; www.chalmers.se). Conventional CFB boilers use silica sand to evenly distribute the heat to the fuel to ensure efficient combustion, which is especially important for coarse fuels, such as wastes or biomass. Chalmer’s new bed material is based on the mineral ilmenite — a metal oxide of iron and titanium (FeTiO3). The ilmenite-based bed material has the same heat-distributing role as sand, but with the added benefit of also evenly distributing O2 to the fuel inside the combustion chamber. Full-scale trials of the new bed material were performed over three years, first at the Chalmers power plant, and from 2014, in parallel at a commercial plant of Eon Swerge AB (Malmö, Sweden; www.eon.se) — a combined heat and power (CHP) plant, Händelöverket in Norrköping. In one of Händelöverket’s five boilers (a 75-MW CFB boiler), sand was replaced with the new bed material. The tests confirmed that “the combustion becomes more uniform and efficient, says Fredrik Lind, product coordinator…
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