A combustor is a crucial unit of gas turbine engine because it should work reliably at high temperatures; provide a suitable temperature distribution at entry to the turbine and supply a low emission level of harmful substances. An operational development of combustors is a very complex process, involving a great volume of design and experimental work. The application of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) methods allows to decrease the volume of experimental works on operational development of combustors and to make changes to the design of combustors on early stages. This paper describes development and validation of CFD-based analysis methodology, used to predict NOx emission level for different types of gas turbine combustors. This methodology includes comprehensive modeling of physical and chemical processes that take place in gas turbine combustors: turbulent flow of reacting gases, heat transfer, chemical kinetics and formation of nitric oxide. To simulate these processes the following mathematical models were used and validated: • Navier-Stockes equations; k-ε RNG, k-ε RSM, k-ω SST turbulence models; • Flamelet and Flamefront combustion models; • Different chemical kinetics mechanisms, describing methane and aviation kerosene oxidation processes; • Diffusion radiation model and discrete ordinates method to calculate radiation heat fluxes; • Extended n-heptane oxidation mechanism to simulate PAH and soot formation; • Prompt and thermal NO formation mechanisms; • Wide band exponential model for gases and empirical correlation for soot to calculate radiation properties of medium. Different factors that affect NOx formation process are considered. They include O and OH prediction methods, influence of radiation heat transfer, and choice of combustion and turbulence models. Developed methodology was used to simulate combustion process in gas turbine combustors that use RQL, LPP, wet NO technologies of low NOx combustion. Merits, demerits and peculiarities of considered low NOx combustion technologies are discussed. According to the results of the analysis, the most efficient technology for NOx reduction was selected.

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