In a domestic boiler that uses pellets as fuel, it is important to control the efficiency of the combustion process. The combustion process in the boiler is a complex process that involves several and simultaneous phenomena such as fluid flow, physical and chemical reactions and heat and mass transfer. Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) modeling in combination with detailed sub-models for the solid fuel conversion is a useful tool to study the combustion performance and to study, for instance, the pollutant emissions.
This paper presents the CFD simulation of the combustion in a 20 kW pellet boiler using the ANSYS Fluent software with a fully integrated packed-bed model. Furthermore, an experimental test was performed to contrast the results obtained. The CFD results were able to predict the arrangement of the particles on the grate, temperature profile of the particles and, the main gas species concentration inside of the boiler with reasonable accuracy when compared with the experimental measurements.