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MEC 551

THERMAL ENGINEERING
CHAPTER
COMBUSTION

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CONTENTS
Give an overview of combustion and fuels.
Apply the conservation of mass to reacting system
to determine balanced reaction equations.
Define the parameters used in combustion analysis
such as air-fuel ratio and percent theoretical air.
Calculate the enthalpy of reaction, enthalpy of
combustion and the heating values of fuels
Analyze reacting systems from the 1st Law
perspective.
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Mole and Mass Fraction

Mole fraction, y is described as;

Ni
yi
Nm

i individual component
m mixture

Mass fraction, mf is defined as;

mi
mf i
mm

N i number of moles

m mass
i individual component
m mixture

Total number of molecules & mass = summation of each


individual component.

Mole and Mass Fraction


Molecular weight of mixture;

m
M
N

N M y M
N
i

The mixture gas constant;

R
R
M

8.314kJ / kmol.K

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What is a combustion process means?


Combustion is a chemical reaction during which a fuel is
oxidized and a large quantity of energy is released.
Energy can be viewed as the ability to cause changes
(chemical composition) and thermal energy(heat) is released
during a combustion process.
For example:
C O2 CO2 Heat

C O2 3.76 N 2 CO2 3.76 N 2 Heat

The above equations we call as chemical reaction equation.

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What is a Fuel?
Fuel: Any material that can be burned to release
thermal energy.
Most familiar fuels are called Hydrocarbon Fuels which
is consists of hydrogen and carbon. They are
denoted by the general formula CnHm.
Hydrocarbon fuels exist in all phases (solid,liquid,gas).
Some examples being coal(solid), gasoline/petrol(oil)
and natural gas (NGV,CNG,LNG,LPG-Propane).
Applications: electricity generation, transportations,
industries.
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Combustion
Heat
lgnition temperatures of various fuels at atmospheric air

Note that, the fuel must be brought above its ignition temperature to start the
combustion.

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What is a Oxidizer?
An oxidizer is a type of chemical which a fuel requires to
burn(sources of oxygen).
The oxidizer most often used in combustion processes is
air (free and readily available).
Pure oxygen,O2 is used as an oxidizer only in some
specialized applications, such as cutting and welding
where air cannot be used.
Therefore, in order to make a combustion occurs, it must
consist of:
C 3 H 8 5(O2 3.76 N 2 ) 3CO2 4 H 2 O 18.8 N 2
Oxidizer: air

C 3 H 8 5O2 3CO2 4 H 2 O

Oxidizer: oxygen

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On a mole or a volume basis, air is composed: 20.9% Oxygen


78.1% Nitrogen(inert gas-does not react with other
element)
0.9% Argon(treat as Nitrogen)
But in the analysis of combustion process, air can be
approximated as:
21% Oxygen
79% Nitrogen
Therefore each mole of oxygen entering the combustion chamber is
accompanied by 0.79/0.21= 3.76 mol of Nitrogen.
Hence,
1 kmol Oxygen+ 3.76 kmol Nitrogen = 4.76 kmol Air

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Basic Chemistry
Chemical equations are balanced on the basis of the conservation
of mass principle (mass balance).
Mass balance- the total mass of each element is conserved during a
chemical reaction.

Total mass of each element in product = total mass of each element in reactant

Total number of atoms of each element is conserved during the


chemical reaction since:
Total Number of Atom= Total Mass of Element / Atomic Mass
Butthe total number of moles is not conserved.

C O2 CO2 Heat
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Air-Fuel Ratio, AF

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A frequently used quantity in the analysis of combustion process to


quantify the amounts of fuel and air.
Air-Fuel Ratio, AF is defined as:AF = mass of air, m
mass of fuel,m
where m = N.M where N= number of moles, M= Molar Mass
Rewrite the equation:
AF = (N.M)
(N.M)
air

fuel

air

fuel

Frequently used:
M = 29 kg/kmol
M = 2 kg/kmol
M = 12 kg/kmol
Equivalence ratio;
Applied to measure the amount of air actually supplied to the combustion
process.
air
H2
C

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Complete and Incomplete Combustion Processes


i)Complete combustion: If all the carbon in the fuel burns
to CO2, all the hydrogen burns to H2O, and all the sulfur (if
any) burns to SO2.Example
ii)Incomplete combustion: If the combustion products
contain any unburned fuel or components such as C, H2,
CO, or OH.Example.
Reasons for incomplete combustion: 1. Insufficient
oxygen, 2. insufficient mixing and 3. dissociation (at high
temperatures).
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Stoichiometric (Theoretical Combustion)


Stoichiometric: The minimum amount of air needed for
the complete combustion of a fuel.
It is also referred as 100% theoretical air.
The ideal combustion process during which a fuel is
burned completely with theoretical air is called theoretical
combustion.
In previous example:

C 3 H 8 5(O2 3.76 N 2 ) 3CO2 4 H 2 O 18.8 N 2


However, in actual practice, excess air is supplied in order
to ensure a complete combustion.
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Incomplete combustion

Set the number of moles of fuel equal to 1.

Assume (or fix) the possible substances in the products.

Write down known mole numbers ie. fuel, air, certain products.

Set the unknown mole numbers with letters, ie. a, b, c, x, y etc.

Balance CO2 , CO, and unburned C with the number of C from the fuel.

Balance H2O, OH and H2 with H from the fuel.

Balance 02 from the other component Each mole O2, it is accompanied by


0.79/0.21 = 3.76 mol of N2

If air is used instead of concentrated oxygen in the reactant, than 1


mole of oxygen in the air will be accompanied by 3.76 mole of nitrogen

Combustion

Excess air is the term used when combustion air is supplied greater
than stoichiometric air.
0% excess air is equal to 100% stoichiometric air.
50% excess air is equal to 150% stoichiometric air.

lf combustion air is supplied less than stoichiometric, it is termed as


air deficiency or starved air.
10% starved air is equal to 90% stoichiometric air.

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First Law of Thermodynamics


From mechanical engineering point of view:

Q net W net m h2 h1
First law considering the chemical energy in the fluid:

Q net W net mh P mh R

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Energy Analysis of Combustion Processes

In energy analysis, standard reference


defined at 25oC and 1atm. The property value
at the standard reference state is written as
ho, so and uo
Enthalpy of reaction, hr = difference between
enthalpy of the products at a specified state
and the enthalpy of reactants at the same
state in complete combustion.

Energy Analysis of Combustion Processes

Enthalpy of combustion, hc = the amount of heat released


during a steady flow of combustion process when 1kmol fuel
burn completely at specified pressure & temperature.
Hc = HProduct - Hreactant

Enthalpy of formation, hf = the enthalpy of a substance at a


specified state due to its chemical composition.
Q = hc = Hprod Hreactant = (Nphf)p - (Nrhf)r
Normally, N2 and O2 consider as stable elements, thus their
enthalpy of formation consider to be zero.

Energy Analysis of
Combustion Processes

In actual combustion process, the temperatures of the


reactants and products are NOT at standard reference
state. Then, the heat value of the reactants or products at
elevated temperature states can be written by

And enthalpy of combution; Hc = HProduct - Hreactant ; where


hT = the sensible enthalpy at specified state, h = the
sensible enthalpy at the standard reference state of 25oC
and 1atm.

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The enthalpy of C and O2 is assigned to be zero at a


standard reference state of 25C and 1 atm. It is
designated as hf or h (and so s, u etc)
25C, 1 atm
C

25C, 1 atm
CO2

O2

Q H P H R hc

393522 kJ/kmol
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Property table for tutorial question:


M (kg/kmol) hf (kJ/kmol)
C3H18
CO2
H2O
O2
N2
CO
H2

114.22
44.01
18.02
32
28
28.01
2

-249952
-393522
-241827
-110529
-

h
(kJ/kmol)
28041
21924
19246
18221
-na-na-

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