Thermal reactors are an important component of sulfur plants, where sulfur is extracted from natural gas and by-products from crude oil processing. The current design process for thermal reactors relies mainly on experience for guidance, with little input from experiment or simulation. The performance of these thermal reactors is affected by the flame shape, flame stability, high-temperature durability of the refractory material, combustion-induced vibrations/burner noise and the extent of reactions. Any issues can result in poor or even unsafe reactor performance.
This white paper outlines how Porter McGuffie used a novel application of CFD to develop a first-of-its-kind framework for analyzing the thermo-acoustic and chemical processing performance of any combustion-fired unit. The framework combines observation, measurement, and multiphysics CFD simulations to provide detailed insights into the complex interactions occurring within the reactors.
The result is a powerful toolset for troubleshooting problems in existing reactors, as well as designing new, higher-performing ones.