Improvements to Mixing of Natural Gas and Hot-Air Blast in the Air Tuyeres of Blast Furnaces with Thermal Insulation of the Blast Duct
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Using natural gas as an additional fuel in a blast furnace is known to reduce coke consumption during blast-furnace production. In a standard tuyere, the hot blast pushes the natural gas up against the surface of the blast duct, resulting in poor mixing between the natural gas and the hot blast, which in turn leads to incomplete combustion and pyrolysis of the natural gas. One approach for improving mixing between the natural gas and the hot blast is to modify the blast-channel geometry.
An engineering design solution was proposed, and the gas dynamics, thermal conditions, and stress/strain state of the air tuyere for this solution were analyzed via ANSYS modeling. Toroidal protrusions on an insert near the outlet of the air tuyere (swirlers) or on the gas inlet nozzle flange (rim) were considered; these protrusions also protect the insert against premature damage in areas subject to the most severe mechanical damage.
The following assumptions were made: The model scope includes both the fluid medium within the blast duct and the thermal insulation insert, i.e., this can be thought of as a conjugate heat exchange problem, and heat transfer to the cooling system water was taken into account using the generalized boundary conditions.
We show that modifying the insert geometry so that there is a protrusion on the working surface or installing a rim in the area where the insert starts to show damage, will increase mixing of the natural gas into the blast air and during combustion. This then increases the blast temperature at the tuyere outlet, which in turn increases the natural-gas flow rate and reduces coke usage. A similar result was achieved for wear on the insert.
KeywordsBlast furnace air tuyere ANSYS modeling gas dynamics heat exchange natural gas combustion swirler rim thermal losses damage to insert
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