Spray combustion characteristics of waste cooking oil biodiesel (WCO) and conventional diesel fuels were simulated using a RANS (Reynolds Averaged Navier Stokes) based model. Surrogates were used to represent WCO and diesel fuels in simulations. N-tetradecane (C14H30) and n-heptane (C7H16) were used as surrogates for diesel. Furthermore for WCO, surrogate mixtures of methyl decanoate, methyl-9-decenoate and n-heptane were used. Thermochemical and reaction kinetic data (115 species and 460 reactions) were implemented in the CFD code to simulate the spray and combustion processes of the two fuels. Validation of the spray liquid length, ignition delay, flame lift-off length and soot formation data were performed against previous published experimental results. The modeled data agreed with the trends obtained in the experimental data at all injection pressures. Further investigations, which were not achieved in previous experiments, showed that prior to main ignition, a first stage ignition (cool flame) characterized by the formation formaldehyde (CH2O) species at low temperature heat release occurred. The main ignition process occurred at high temperature with the formation of OH radicals. Furthermore, it was observed that the cool flame played a greater role in stabilizing the downstream lifted flame of both fuels. Increase in injection pressure led to the cool flame location to be pushed further downstream. This led to flame stabilization further away from the injector nozzle. WCO had shorter lift-off length compared to diesel as a result of its cool flame which being closer to the injector. Soot formation followed similar trends obtained in the experiments.
Bibliographical noteKAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledgements: The authors will like to thank the KAUST high performance computing (HPC) laboratory for their assistance in using many computer CPUs for the simulation activities.