Fluidized beds are being used in practice to gasify biomass to create producer gas, a flammable gas that can be used for process heating. However, recent literature has identified the need to better understand and characterize biomass fluidization hydrodynamics, and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) is one approach in this effort. Previous work by the authors considered the validity of using two-dimensional versus three-dimensional simulations to model a cold-flow fluidizing biomass bed configured with a single side port air injection. The side port is introduced to inject air and promote mixing within the bed. Comparisons with experiments indicated that three-dimensional simulations were necessary to capture the fluidization behavior for the more complex geometry. This paper considers the effects of increasing fluidization air flow and side port air flow on the homogeneity of the bed material in a 10.2 cm diameter fluidized bed. Two air injection ports diametrically opposed to each other are also considered to determine their effects on fluidization hydrodynamics. Whenever possible, the simulations are compared to experimental data of time-averaged local gas holdup obtained using X-ray computed tomography. This study will show that increasing the fluidization and side port air flows contribute to a more homogeneous bed. Furthermore, the introduction of two side ports results in a more symmetric gas-solid distribution.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.