Experimental investigation of pulverised biomass combustion for validation of numerical models

Oxyflame Copyright: © WSA Picture top: Optical comparison of a pulverized coal flame in air and in oxy-fuel atmosphere; Picture below: LDA-Measurement within an pulverized coal flame

The overall objective of this project is the detailed measurement of different, well-defined swirl-stabilized solid fuel flames in air and oxyfuel atmospheres. Thus, a coherent understanding will be developed, while also detailed experimental data is provided, hence, enabling a sound validation of the numerical models for transient simulation of solid fuel flames developed in partner projects.

Measured quantities include flow velocity with optional simultaneous measurement of particle size, gas composition, gas and particle temperature, gas radiation, and OH* chemiluminescence to determine the location of reaction zones. The investigations will be carried out both on the existing combustion chamber at the WSA employing the swirl burner developed at WSA, and on the 1 MWth combustion chamber of subproject C7 at TU Darmstadt and where an upscaled version of the WSA swirl-burner will be employed. High spatial resolution laser-optical methods are used for detailed measurement of the flow field.

While in the first two funding periods the focus of the measurements was on pulverized coal flames in the range of 60 kWth, in the 3rd funding period an extension of both the range of thermal power (up to 180 kWth) and the fuel spectrum (towards biomass) will take place. At the end of the funding period, measurements will be performed at the 1 MWth plant to evaluate the scalability - both of the derived mechanisms and of the developed numerical models.


Project details

Project duration

10/2013 - 06/2025

Funded by



  • Combustion chamber for the investigation of solid fuel flames: Pulverized fuels can be injected into the combustion chamber to produce flames with up to approximately 160 kW of thermal power. The flames can be investigated with the available equipment in terms of local variables such as particle velocity and temperature, gas composition and temperature, wall temperature and radiation properties, as well as qualitative characterization for the location of reaction zones.
  • Variable LDV system: enables measurement of axial and tangential velocity components at a measurement distance of up to 1500 mm.
  • VIS/NIR spectrometer: e.g. for the determination of particle temperatures
  • 2-color pyrometer: Determination of particle and surface temperatures
  • Flue gas probe with downstream FTIR-spectrometer: determination of local species concentrations in the flame
  • Extraction pyrometer: Determination of local gas temperatures in the flame
  • Hemispherical radiometer: enables the determination of the radiation incident on the wall
  • CCD camera with image intensifier and filter: enables the determination of the location of reaction zones and a qualitative flame description