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Driving Development

MFS applies our software tools to a broad range of challenging multiphase flow problems in support of the DOE mission. The strong connection between the software development and applications is a key strength of NETL’s MFS programs. Applications work serves as a demanding test environment for the codes where problems push the boundaries of scale and physics providing valuable feedback to both software development and software quality assurance. In addition, application needs will drive the development program to implement new capabilities required for the work.

Gasifier Design and Scale-up for Industrial-scale Polygeneration

MFS is supporting an industry team in the development and scale-up of a new coal-based polygeneration facility proposed for Fairbanks AL. The project proposes to build a 10MWe power plant producing a range of products including pyrolysis liquids, syngas, and combined heat a power. MFS is doing detailed simulations of the full-scale moving bed gasifier to analyze performance over a range of operating conditions. Recent results for that effort have been reported at NETL’s 2020 Integrated project Review Meeting – Gasification Systems, and at the 2020 Pittsburgh Coal Conference.

Circulating Fluid Bed Combustion for Carbon Negative Application

MFS is working with industry partners to apply computational tools and FE/NETL supercomputing resources to aid in understanding and optimizing CFB boiler performance under challenging operating conditions of interest to operators. The problems addressed can range from troubleshooting or optimization of devices in existing fossil plants to design and scale up of devices being developed under initiatives such as Coal FIRST.

  • MFS Collaborates with Natural Resources Canada-CanmetENERGY (NRCan) – this effort studies circulating fluidized bed (CFB) combustion.
  • Testing – NRCan has done extensive testing of CFB combustor performance at the 50kWth scale for coal and coal-biomass blends with air and oxygen enriched conditions.
  • Developing Procedures – The rig at NRCan has been used to develop the complex start-up and shutdown procedures for their large scale 1MWth oxy-PFBC that was built in partnership with GTI and Linde at CanmetENERGY in Ottawa.
  • Developing and Validating Models – NETL is using the detailed, high-quality data from the NRCan tests to develop and validate models of the system using the MFiX Software Suite. Once validated at the small pilot scale, these MFiX models running on FE’s JOULE2 Supercomputer will be used to study scale-up and performance optimization of coal-biomass CFB combustion systems designed for negative CO2 emissions.
  • Published Works – A recent technical report has been published, co-authored by NETL’s Subhodeep Banerjee and NRCan’s project lead Dr. Robin Hughes: Subhodeep Banerjee, Robin W Hughes, “Biomass Combustion in a Circulating Fluidized Bed Combustor“, DOE/NETL-2020/2148; NETL Technical Report Series; U.S. Department of Energy, National Energy Technology Laboratory: Morgantown, WV, 2020; p. 32. DOI: 10.2172/ Liquids.