Pal, Pinaki; Kumar, Gaurav; Drennan, Scott; Rankin, Brent; Som, Sibendu
A computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model was developed to simulate a representative non-premixed RDE combustor. Unsteady Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) simulations were performed for the full combustor geometry (including the separate fuel and air injection ports), with hydrogen as the fuel and air as the oxidizer. Adaptive mesh refinement (AMR) was incorporated to achieve a good trade-off between model accuracy and computational expense. A finite-rate chemistry model was employed along with a 10-species detailed kinetic mechanism to describe the H2-Air combustion chemistry. Two different operating conditions were simulated, corresponding to the same global equivalence ratio of unity but different fuel and air mass flow rates. Numerical results were compared against available experimental data on detonation wave frequency/height, reactant fill height, oblique shock angle and axial pressure distribution in the channel. The CFD model predicted the sensitivity of these wave characteristics to operating conditions with good accuracy, both qualitatively and quantitatively. The present CFD model offers a potential capability to perform rapid design space exploration and/or performance optimization studies for realistic full-scale RDE configurations.