An atmospheric combustor model with optical access for confined, non-premixed swirl-stabilized flames was developed in order to investigate the combustion behaviour of gas turbine flames fired with low-caloric syngases. The applied measuring techniques are Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) for cold aerodynamic analysis, IR thermometry in open flame conditions, thermocouple traverses and global emissions analyzer in confined flame conditions. Two different fuels were chosen: propane and a synthetic mixture of CH4, CO, CO2, H2 having a composition typical of a gas from wood pyrolysis. Thermal powers between ∼5 kW and ∼20 kW were obtained with two different air flow rates and equivalence ratio varied in the range φ = 0.2–1.0. The experimental results constitute a database for the validation of numerical combustion models. Preliminary numerical analysis was carried out with STAR-CD software package.

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