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Coal Combustion - Partial Validation of a Complex Problem

NAFEMS International Journal of CFD Case Studies

Volume 6, January 2007

ISSN 1462-236X

Coal Combustion - Partial Validation of a Complex Problem

P L Stephenson
RWE npower, Windmill Hill Business Park, Whitehill Way, Swindon, Wiltshire, SN5 6PB

Keywords: Partial Validation, Coal, Combustion, CFD, Combustion Test Facility, RWE npower



This paper summarises efforts made over a number of years to apply CFD to coal combustion in the Combustion Test Facility (CTF) currently owned and operated by RWE npower. It formed a key part of a strategy to develop a CFD capability in this area. The first two applications (to a drop tube furnace and to the CTF fitted with one type of burner) were successful. However, a subsequent application (the CTF with a completely different burner) had only limited success. The precise reasons for this limited success apply solely to this particular application. However, the work raised two questions that are relevant to any industrial application of a commercial CFD code. Therefore the aim of this paper is to provide an overview of this work and to use the experience gained to discuss two questions. They are as follows:

  • How can users obtain sufficient validation of CFD predictions of complex physical phenomena when commercial pressures mean that it is not possible to take detailed measurements?
  • To what extent should users accept that the relevant physical models have been correctly implemented in a commercial code, without running detailed tests themselves?


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Cite this paper

P L Stephenson, Coal Combustion - Partial Validation of a Complex Problem, NAFEMS International Journal of CFD Case Studies, Volume 6, 2007, Pages 39-53,

Document Details

AuthorStephenson. P
TypeJournal Article
Date 3rd January 2007
OrganisationRWE npower


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