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Title: Development of an Acoustic Sensor for On-Line Gas Temperature Measurement in Gasifiers

Abstract

This project was awarded under U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) Program Solicitation DE-PS26-02NT41422 and specifically addresses Technical Topical Area 2-Gasification Technologies. The project team includes Enertechnix, Inc. as the main contractor and ConocoPhillips Company as a technical partner, who also provides access to the SG Solutions Gasification Facility (formerly Wabash River Energy Limited), host for the field-testing portion of the research. Since 1989 the U.S. Department of Energy has supported development of advanced coal gasification technology. The Wabash River and TECO IGCC demonstration projects supported by the DOE have demonstrated the ability of these plants to achieve high levels of energy efficiency and extremely low emissions of hazardous pollutants. However, a continuing challenge for this technology is the tradeoff between high carbon conversion which requires operation with high internal gas temperatures, and limited refractory life which is exacerbated by those high operating temperatures. Attempts to control internal gas temperature so as to operate these gasifiers at the optimum temperature have been hampered by the lack of a reliable technology for measuring internal gas temperatures. Thermocouples have serious survival problems and provide useful temperature information for only a few days or weeks after startup before burningmore » out. For this reason, the Department of Energy has funded several research projects to develop more robust and reliable temperature measurement approaches for use in coal gasifiers. Enertechnix has developed a line of acoustic gas temperature sensors for use in coal-fired electric utility boilers, kraft recovery boilers, cement kilns and petrochemical process heaters. Acoustic pyrometry provides several significant advantages for gas temperature measurement in hostile process environments. First, it is non-intrusive so survival of the measurement components is not a serious problem. Second, it provides a line-of-sight average temperature rather than a point measurement, so the measured temperature is more representative of the process conditions than those provided by thermocouples. Unlike radiation pyrometers, the measured temperature is a linear average over the full path rather than a complicated function of gas temperature and the exponential Beer's law. For this reason, acoustic pyrometry is well suited to tomography allowing detailed temperature maps to be created through the use of multiple path measurements in a plane. Therefore, acoustic pyrometry is an attractive choice for measuring gas temperature inside a coal gasifier. The objective of this project is to adapt acoustic pyrometer technology to make it suitable for measuring gas temperature inside a coal gasifier, to develop a prototype sensor based on this technology, and to demonstrate its performance through testing on a commercial gasifier. The project is organized in three phases, each of approximately one year duration. The first phase consists of researching a variety of sound generation and coupling approaches suitable for use with a high pressure process, evaluation of the impact of gas composition variability on the acoustic temperature measurement approach, evaluation of the impact of suspended particles on sound attenuation, evaluation of slagging issues and development of concepts to deal with this issue, development and testing of key prototype components to allow selection of the best approaches, and development of a conceptual design for a field prototype sensor that can be tested on an operating gasifier. The second phase consists of designing and fabricating a series of prototype sensors, testing them in the lab and at a gasifier facility, and developing a conceptual design for an engineering prototype sensor. The third phase consists of designing and fabricating the engineering prototype, testing it in the lab and in a commercial gasifier, and conducting extended field trials to demonstrate sensor performance and investigate the ability to improve gasifier performance through the use of the sensor.« less

Authors:
;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Enertechnix, Inc.
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
889026
DOE Contract Number:
FC26-03NT41617
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
01 COAL, LIGNITE, AND PEAT; 02 PETROLEUM; ACOUSTICS; BOILERS; CARBON; CEMENTS; COAL; COAL GASIFICATION; ENERGY EFFICIENCY; GASIFICATION; HEATERS; KILNS; PETROCHEMICALS; POLLUTANTS; PROGRESS REPORT; PYROMETERS; RADIATIONS; TEMPERATURE MEASUREMENT; TESTING; THERMOCOUPLES; TOMOGRAPHY

Citation Formats

Peter Ariessohn, and Hans Hornung. Development of an Acoustic Sensor for On-Line Gas Temperature Measurement in Gasifiers. United States: N. p., 2006. Web. doi:10.2172/889026.
Peter Ariessohn, & Hans Hornung. Development of an Acoustic Sensor for On-Line Gas Temperature Measurement in Gasifiers. United States. doi:10.2172/889026.
Peter Ariessohn, and Hans Hornung. Sun . "Development of an Acoustic Sensor for On-Line Gas Temperature Measurement in Gasifiers". United States. doi:10.2172/889026. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/889026.
@article{osti_889026,
title = {Development of an Acoustic Sensor for On-Line Gas Temperature Measurement in Gasifiers},
author = {Peter Ariessohn and Hans Hornung},
abstractNote = {This project was awarded under U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) Program Solicitation DE-PS26-02NT41422 and specifically addresses Technical Topical Area 2-Gasification Technologies. The project team includes Enertechnix, Inc. as the main contractor and ConocoPhillips Company as a technical partner, who also provides access to the SG Solutions Gasification Facility (formerly Wabash River Energy Limited), host for the field-testing portion of the research. Since 1989 the U.S. Department of Energy has supported development of advanced coal gasification technology. The Wabash River and TECO IGCC demonstration projects supported by the DOE have demonstrated the ability of these plants to achieve high levels of energy efficiency and extremely low emissions of hazardous pollutants. However, a continuing challenge for this technology is the tradeoff between high carbon conversion which requires operation with high internal gas temperatures, and limited refractory life which is exacerbated by those high operating temperatures. Attempts to control internal gas temperature so as to operate these gasifiers at the optimum temperature have been hampered by the lack of a reliable technology for measuring internal gas temperatures. Thermocouples have serious survival problems and provide useful temperature information for only a few days or weeks after startup before burning out. For this reason, the Department of Energy has funded several research projects to develop more robust and reliable temperature measurement approaches for use in coal gasifiers. Enertechnix has developed a line of acoustic gas temperature sensors for use in coal-fired electric utility boilers, kraft recovery boilers, cement kilns and petrochemical process heaters. Acoustic pyrometry provides several significant advantages for gas temperature measurement in hostile process environments. First, it is non-intrusive so survival of the measurement components is not a serious problem. Second, it provides a line-of-sight average temperature rather than a point measurement, so the measured temperature is more representative of the process conditions than those provided by thermocouples. Unlike radiation pyrometers, the measured temperature is a linear average over the full path rather than a complicated function of gas temperature and the exponential Beer's law. For this reason, acoustic pyrometry is well suited to tomography allowing detailed temperature maps to be created through the use of multiple path measurements in a plane. Therefore, acoustic pyrometry is an attractive choice for measuring gas temperature inside a coal gasifier. The objective of this project is to adapt acoustic pyrometer technology to make it suitable for measuring gas temperature inside a coal gasifier, to develop a prototype sensor based on this technology, and to demonstrate its performance through testing on a commercial gasifier. The project is organized in three phases, each of approximately one year duration. The first phase consists of researching a variety of sound generation and coupling approaches suitable for use with a high pressure process, evaluation of the impact of gas composition variability on the acoustic temperature measurement approach, evaluation of the impact of suspended particles on sound attenuation, evaluation of slagging issues and development of concepts to deal with this issue, development and testing of key prototype components to allow selection of the best approaches, and development of a conceptual design for a field prototype sensor that can be tested on an operating gasifier. The second phase consists of designing and fabricating a series of prototype sensors, testing them in the lab and at a gasifier facility, and developing a conceptual design for an engineering prototype sensor. The third phase consists of designing and fabricating the engineering prototype, testing it in the lab and in a commercial gasifier, and conducting extended field trials to demonstrate sensor performance and investigate the ability to improve gasifier performance through the use of the sensor.},
doi = {10.2172/889026},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Sun Jan 15 00:00:00 EST 2006},
month = {Sun Jan 15 00:00:00 EST 2006}
}

Technical Report:

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  • This project was awarded under U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) Program Solicitation DE-PS26-02NT41422 and specifically addresses Technical Topical Area 2 - Gasification Technologies. The project team includes Enertechnix, Inc. as the main contractor and ConocoPhillips Company as a technical partner, who also provides access to the SG Solutions Gasification Facility (formerly Wabash River Energy Limited), host for the field-testing portion of the research. The objective of this project was to adapt acoustic pyrometer technology to make it suitable for measuring gas temperature inside a coal gasifier, to develop a prototype sensor based on this technology,more » and to demonstrate its performance through testing on a commercial gasifier. The project was organized in three phases, each of approximately one year duration. The first phase consisted of researching a variety of sound generation and coupling approaches suitable for use with a high pressure process, evaluation of the impact of gas composition variability on the acoustic temperature measurement approach, evaluation of the impact of suspended particles and gas properties on sound attenuation, evaluation of slagging issues and development of concepts to deal with this issue, development and testing of key prototype components to allow selection of the best approaches, and development of a conceptual design for a field prototype sensor that could be tested on an operating gasifier. The second phase consisted of designing and fabricating a series of prototype sensors, testing them in the laboratory, and developing a conceptual design for a field prototype sensor. The third phase consisted of designing and fabricating the field prototype, and testing it in the lab and in a commercial gasifier to demonstrate the ability to obtain accurate measurements of gas temperature in an operating gasifier. Following the completion of the initial 3 year project, several continuations were awarded by the Department of Energy to allow Enertechnix to conduct extended testing of the sensor at the Wabash River facility. In February, 2008 the sensor was installed on the gasifier in preparation for a long-term test. During the initial testing of the sensor a stainless steel tube on the sensor failed and allowed syngas to escape. The syngas self-ignited and the ensuing small fire damaged some of the components on the sensor. There was no damage to the gasifier or other equipment and no injuries resulted from this incident. Two meetings were held to identify the root causes of the incident-one at Wabash River and one at Enertechnix. A list of recommended improvements that would have addressed the causes of the incident was created and presented to the Department of Energy on May 2, 2008. However, the DOE decided not to pursue these improvements and terminated the project. This report describes all of the activities conducted during the project and reports the findings of each activity in detail. The investigation of potential sound generation and coupling methods led to the selection of a reflected shock method which has been developed into a functioning prototype device. The principles of operation of this device and its performance characteristics are described in the report. Modeling of the attenuation of sound by suspended particles and by interaction of the sound pulses with the high temperature syngas inside the gasifier was conducted and the predictions of those models were used to determine the required sound pulse intensity to allow the sound pulses to be detected after passage through the gasifier environment. These modeling results are presented in this report. A study of the likely spatial and temporal variability of gas composition inside the gasifier was performed and the results of that study was used to predict the impact of that variability on the accuracy of the acoustic temperature method. These results are reported here. A design for a port rodding mechanism was developed to deal with potential slagging issues and was incorporated into the prototype sensor. This port rodding mechanism operated flawlessly during the field testing, but because these tests were performed in a region of the gasifier that experiences little slagging, the effectiveness of the rodding mechanism in dealing with highly slagging conditions was not fully demonstrated. This report describes the design and operation of the automated Gasifier Acoustic Pyrometer (autoGAP) which was tested at the Wabash River facility. The results of the tests are reported and analyzed in detail. All of the objectives of the initial R&D project were achieved and a field prototype acoustic pyrometer sensor was successfully tested at the Wabash River gasifier plant.« less
  • This project was awarded under U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) Program Solicitation DE-PS26-02NT41422 and specifically addresses Technical Topical Area 2 - Gasification Technologies. The project team includes Enertechnix, Inc. as the main contractor and ConocoPhillips Company as a technical partner, who also provides access to the SG Solutions Gasification Facility (formerly Wabash River Energy Limited), host for the field-testing portion of the research. The objective of this project was to adapt acoustic pyrometer technology to make it suitable for measuring gas temperature inside a coal gasifier, to develop a prototype sensor based on this technology,more » and to demonstrate its performance through testing on a commercial gasifier. The project was organized in three phases, each of approximately one year duration. The first phase consisted of researching a variety of sound generation and coupling approaches suitable for use with a high pressure process, evaluation of the impact of gas composition variability on the acoustic temperature measurement approach, evaluation of the impact of suspended particles and gas properties on sound attenuation, evaluation of slagging issues and development of concepts to deal with this issue, development and testing of key prototype components to allow selection of the best approaches, and development of a conceptual design for a field prototype sensor that could be tested on an operating gasifier. The second phase consisted of designing and fabricating a series of prototype sensors, testing them in the laboratory, and developing a conceptual design for a field prototype sensor. The third phase consisted of designing and fabricating the field prototype, and testing it in the lab and in a commercial gasifier to demonstrate the ability to obtain accurate measurements of gas temperature in an operating gasifier. This report describes all of the activities conducted during the project and reports the findings of each activity in detail. The investigation of potential sound generation and coupling methods led to the selection of a reflected shock method which has been developed into a functioning prototype device. The principles of operation of this device and its performance characteristics are described in the report. Modeling of the attenuation of sound by suspended particles and by interaction of the sound pulses with the high temperature syngas inside the gasifier was conducted and the predictions of those models were used to determine the required sound pulse intensity to allow the sound pulses to be detected after passage through the gasifier environment. These modeling results are presented in this report. A study of the likely spatial and temporal variability of gas composition inside the gasifier was performed and the results of that study was used to predict the impact of that variability on the accuracy of the acoustic temperature method. These results are reported here. A design for a port rodding mechanism was developed to deal with potential slagging issues and was incorporated into the prototype sensor. This port rodding mechanism operated flawlessly during the field testing, but because these tests were performed in a region of the gasifier that experiences little slagging, the effectiveness of the rodding mechanism in dealing with highly slagging conditions was not fully demonstrated. This report describes the design and operation of the automated Gasifier Acoustic Pyrometer (autoGAP) which was tested at the Wabash River facility. The results of the tests are reported and analyzed in detail. All of the objectives of the project have been achieved. A field prototype acoustic pyrometer sensor has been successfully tested at the Wabash River gasifier plant. Acoustic signals were propagated through the gases inside the gasifier and were detected by the receiver unit, the times of flight of these sound pulses were measured and these propagation times were converted into temperatures which agreed very well with thermocouple measurements made in the same location as the acoustic measurements. The acoustic pyrometer system was operated under computer control and was shown to be capable of making measurements every 10 minutes (or more frequently) for an extended period. Some minor mechanical issues remain. During testing on the gasifier, one of the pressure seals failed after two days of operation, but this can easily be corrected by the use of a different seal design. Also, the testing performed so far was conducted in a region of the gasifier where conditions are somewhat less harsh than in other parts of the gasifier where thermocouples will not survive. Therefore, additional testing should be performed in those harsher locations to demonstrate the ability of this new measurement technology to provide temperature measurements that cannot be obtained by any other means.« less
  • This report summarizes technical progress over the first six months of the Phase II program ''On-Line Self-Calibrating Single Crystal Sapphire Optical Sensor Instrumentation for Accurate and Reliable Coal Gasifier Temperature Measurement'', funded by the Federal Energy Technology Center of the U.S. Department of Energy, and performed by the Center for Photonics Technology of the Bradley Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Virginia Tech. The outcome of the first phase of this program was the selection of broadband polarimetric differential interferometry (BPDI) for further prototype instrumentation development. This approach is based on the measurement of the optical path difference (OPD)more » between two orthogonally polarized light beams in a single-crystal sapphire disk. The objective of this program is to bring the BPDI sensor technology, which has already been demonstrated in the laboratory, to a level where the sensor can be deployed in the harsh industrial environments and will become commercially viable. Research efforts were focused on analyzing and testing factors that impact performance degradation of the initially designed sensor prototype, including sensing element movement within the sensing probe and optical signal quality degradation. Based these results, a new version of the sensing system was designed by combining the sapphire disk sensing element and the single crystal zirconia right angle light reflector into one novel single crystal sapphire right angle prism. The new sensor prototype was tested up to 1650 C.« less
  • This report summarizes technical progress over the second six month period of the Phase II program ''On-Line Self-Calibrating Single Crystal Sapphire Optical Sensor Instrumentation for Accurate and Reliable Coal Gasifier Temperature Measurement'', funded by the Federal Energy Technology Center of the U.S. Department of Energy, and performed by the Center for Photonics Technology of the Bradley Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Virginia Tech. The outcome of the first phase of this program was the selection of broadband polarimetric differential interferometry (BPDI) for further prototype instrumentation development. This approach is based on the measurement of the optical path differencemore » (OPD) between two orthogonally polarized light beams in a single-crystal sapphire disk. The objective of this program is to bring the BPDI sensor technology, which has already been demonstrated in the laboratory, to a level where the sensor can be deployed in the harsh industrial environments and will become commercially viable. Research efforts were focused on evaluating corrosion effects in single crystal sapphire at temperatures up to 1400 C, and designing the sensor mechanical packaging with input from Wabash River Power Plant. Upcoming meetings will establish details for the gasifier field test.« less
  • This report summarizes technical progress over the third six month period of the Phase II program ''On-Line Self-Calibrating Single Crystal Sapphire Optical Sensor Instrumentation for Accurate and Reliable Coal Gasifier Temperature Measurement'', funded by the Federal Energy Technology Center of the U.S. Department of Energy, and performed by the Center for Photonics Technology of the Bradley Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Virginia Tech. The outcome of the first phase of this program was the selection of broadband polarimetric differential interferometry (BPDI) for further prototype instrumentation development. This approach is based on the measurement of the optical path differencemore » (OPD) between two orthogonally polarized light beams in a single-crystal sapphire disk. The objective of this program is to bring the BPDI sensor technology, which has already been demonstrated in the laboratory, to a level where the sensor can be deployed in the harsh industrial environments and will become commercially viable. Research efforts were focused on sensor probe design and machining, sensor electronics design, software algorithm design, sensor field installation procedures, and sensor remote data access and control. Field testing will begin in the next several weeks.« less