# Numerical Simulation of Effects of Different Operational Parameters on the Carbon Solution Loss Ratio of Coke inside Blast Furnace

^{1}

^{2}

^{3}

^{*}

## Abstract

**:**

## 1. Introduction

_{2}emission is a global problem that affects many countries. Ironmaking processes contribute significantly to CO

_{2}emission, and this is the case especially with blast furnace process, which produces more than 90% of the world’s pig iron. The blast furnace is a chemical reactor involving counter-current flows of gas and solid [1,2,3]. Iron-bearing materials and coke are charged in turn at the top of the furnace. Hot air, enriched oxygen, and pulverized coal are blown into the furnace through the tuyeres. Iron-bearing materials are reduced by the reducing gas containing CO and H

_{2}, which are generated from the combustion of coke and coal in the cavity around the exit of a tuyere called the raceway [2,3,4]. The hot reducing gas flows upward, heats up the iron-bearing materials, and escapes from the top in the form of CO

_{2}, CO, H

_{2}, H

_{2}O and N

_{2}. Coke has several functions in a blast furnace: a fuel providing the heat for chemical reactions and for the melting of iron and slag; a reducing agent in itself and also providing gases for iron oxide reduction; and a permeable skeleton providing a passage for liquids and gases [5]. Therefore, it is very important for the efficiency of the blast furnace process and the quality of the hot metal. The carbon solution loss reaction of coke is a main means of coke gasification for the coke consumption in the upper part of the blast furnace. The strength and the size of the coke will deteriorate with the carbon solution loss reaction when the coke moves towards the lower zones of the blast furnace. This greatly affects the permeability of the bed and the efficiency of the process [1,5]. Therefore, the carbon solution loss of the coke should be restricted.

_{2}gas. Sato et al. [10] stated that the coke pore structure modified the available carbon surface area for the carbon solution loss. Alkalies have catalytic effects on the solution loss reaction, and they can decrease the threshold temperature to approximately 760 °C [5,11,12]. Fe, CaO and MgO in coke ash are also shown to have a catalytic effect on solution loss [13,14]. However, the effects of different operational parameters on the carbon solution loss ratio are seldom studied. Physical experiments and mathematical modelling are common ways of investigating carbon solution loss. Several continuum models have been applied to improve practical operations of the ironmaking process especially in a blast furnace [15,16,17,18,19].

## 2. Model Establishment

_{2}, H

_{2}, H

_{2}O and N

_{2}. The density of gas phase was calculated by the ideal gas law. The solid phase was simplified to include Fe

_{2}O

_{3}, Fe

_{3}O

_{4}, FeO, Fe, and C. Other components were not considered for the sake of simplicity. The density of solid phase was 4190 kg·m

^{−3}, the same as the apparent density of the original solid material. Both gas phase and solid phase were considered as continuous phases using the Eulerian method. The mass, energy, and species transfer can be described by Equation (1) under steady state [20,21].

_{2}(Reaction 9 and 11), and so on.

${3\mathrm{Fe}}_{2}{\mathrm{O}}_{3}+\mathrm{CO}\stackrel{}{\to}{2\mathrm{Fe}}_{3}{\mathrm{O}}_{4}{+\mathrm{CO}}_{2}$ | Reaction 1 |

${\mathrm{Fe}}_{3}{\mathrm{O}}_{4}+\mathrm{CO}\stackrel{}{\to}{3\mathrm{FeO}+\mathrm{CO}}_{2}$ | Reaction 2 |

$\mathrm{FeO}+\mathrm{CO}\stackrel{}{\to}{\mathrm{Fe}+\mathrm{CO}}_{2}$ | Reaction 3 |

${3\mathrm{Fe}}_{2}{\mathrm{O}}_{3}{+\mathrm{H}}_{2}\stackrel{}{\to}{2\mathrm{Fe}}_{3}{\mathrm{O}}_{4}{+\mathrm{H}}_{2}\mathrm{O}$ | Reaction 4 |

${\mathrm{Fe}}_{3}{\mathrm{O}}_{4}{+\mathrm{H}}_{2}\stackrel{}{\to}{3\mathrm{FeO}+\mathrm{H}}_{2}\mathrm{O}$ | Reaction 5 |

${\mathrm{FeO}+\mathrm{H}}_{2}\stackrel{}{\to}{\mathrm{Fe}+\mathrm{H}}_{2}\mathrm{O}$ | Reaction 6 |

${\mathrm{C}+\mathrm{CO}}_{2}\leftarrow \to 2\mathrm{CO}$ | Reaction 7 |

${\mathrm{C}+\mathrm{H}}_{2}{\mathrm{O}}_{}\leftarrow \to {\mathrm{CO}+\mathrm{H}}_{2}$ | Reaction 8 |

${\mathrm{C}+\mathrm{O}}_{2}\stackrel{}{\to}{\mathrm{CO}}_{2}$ | Reaction 9 |

${\mathrm{CO}+\mathrm{H}}_{2}\mathrm{O}\leftarrow \to {\mathrm{CO}}_{2}{+\mathrm{H}}_{2}$ | Reaction 10 |

${\mathrm{H}}_{2}+0{.5\mathrm{O}}_{2}\stackrel{}{\to}{\mathrm{H}}_{2}\mathrm{O}$ | Reaction 11 |

_{2}, carbon solution loss reaction, water gas reaction, combustion of carbon and water gas shift reaction were taken from other work [27,28,29,30]. The combustion rate of H

_{2}with O

_{2}was taken from Kuwabara et al.’s work [31]. The effective diffusion coefficients were taken from other work [27,28,29,30]. The viscosity and thermal conductivity of gas were obtained from the literature [18,32,33,34]. The chemical reaction rates are as follows.

_{2}O

_{3}and only C in the coke was considered. The coal injection and the oxygen of the blast at the tuyere were converted to CO. Therefore, the mass fraction of Fe

_{2}O

_{3}and C were 77.05% and 22.95% at the top of blast furnace, respectively. The volume fraction of the solid phase was fixed, as shown in Figure 1c. The burden velocity distribution was firstly calculated with a simple model without taking into account heat and energy transfer. The results of burden velocity were then loaded to the present complex model taking into consideration all the transfers and reactions. The top gas pressure in the blast furnace was 194 kPa. The gas compositions at the tuyere were N

_{2}-74.92 vol%, O

_{2}-15.34 vol%, CO-9.15 vol%, H

_{2}O-0.59 vol%. The conservation equations were solved numerically by the finite volume method with commercial software ANSYS FLUENT (release 17.0) [35]. The Eulerian multiphase module was used in this model. The first order upwind scheme was used for discretization of density, momentum, volume fraction, energy, gas and solid species, and so on. The Phase Coupled SIMPLE method was applied [21,30]. The simulation was considered to have converged when the residuals for each variable were less than 10

^{−5}. The solution flow chart is shown in Figure 2.

## 3. Results and Discussion

#### 3.1. Base Model

_{2}O is not listed since it was not measured in the practice. The maximum relative error between the measured and calculated results is 6.3%. Therefore, the present model is considered to be applicable to carry out the further simulation.

_{C}at this boundary is 18.61%.

#### 3.2. Oxygen Enrichment Ratio

^{−1}and produced hot metal increases by 3.3% when the oxygen enrichment ratio increases by 1%. As a result, the amounts of gas, coal, coke, and production can be determined, and the compositions of injected gas and top gas are then calculated based on the balances of Fe, C, H and O. Table 4 presents the typical parameters when the oxygen enrichment ratio varies from 1% to 5% at a step of 1%, where the production, coke rate and coal rate at 1–5% are calculated based on the above balance calculations. The temperature profiles at different oxygen enrichment ratios are shown in Figure 4. The carbon solution loss ratio is also calculated after simulation, as shown in Figure 5.

#### 3.3. Coke Oven Gas Injection

_{2}emissions of the blast furnace, coke oven gas was mixed with hot blast and injected from tuyeres. Table 5 shows the composition of the coke oven gas in Bayi Steel. The total amount of coke oven gas and blast gas was kept constant when injecting the coke oven gas. The proportion of coke oven gas in the gas mixture was from 3% to 15% at a step of 3%.

_{4}and O

_{2}in coke oven gas were converted to CO and H

_{2}for simplicity. The replacement ratio of coke oven gas to coke was 0.4 kg·Nm

^{−3}. Therefore, for each 3% increase of coke oven gas, the oxygen enrichment rate increased by 0.55%. The production increased by 246 ton HM and the coke ratio decreases by 16kg·ton HM

^{−1}. The temperature profiles at different coke oven gas injection ratios are shown in Figure 6. The carbon solution loss ratio under different coke oven gas injection ratios was also calculated after simulation, as shown in Figure 7.

_{2}in the gas mixture due to the high H

_{2}content of the coke oven gas. This results in a higher H

_{2}O content in the blast furnace due to the reduction reaction of the H

_{2}and iron ore. The higher H

_{2}O content may be part in a water gas reaction, which increases the reaction of the carbon solution loss. The temperature of the strong reaction between the coke and the H

_{2}O is from 800 to 1300 °C. The average H

_{2}O content in the gas in the blast furnace increases from 2.45% to 8.67% when the coke oven gas ratio increases from 0% to 15%. Moreover, the high temperature zone shrinks after the injection of the coke oven gas, which leads to the expansion of the zone for the reaction of the carbon solution loss.

_{2}emission of the blast furnace as a hydrogen-rich gas. On the other hand, the injection of coke oven gas causes the temperature in the lower part of the blast furnace to decrease and the carbon solution loss to increase, which impairs the operation of blast furnace. Therefore, coke oven gas should not be injected into the blast furnace in Bayi Steel in its present condition. Coke oven gas should only be injected only if the carbon solution loss is low enough, and it should be done a higher gas temperature and with better coke quality of a high M40 and a high CSR (coke strength after reaction).

#### 3.4. Steel Scrap Charging

^{−1}, and production increases 70 ton HM while the coal rate and the amount of hot blast remain unchanged. The temperature profiles at different proportions of steel scrap added are shown in Figure 8. The carbon solution loss ratio is calculated after simulation, as shown in Figure 9.

_{2}content decreases. This also leads to a decrease of the carbon solution loss ratio.

## 4. Conclusions

## Author Contributions

## Funding

## Acknowledgments

## Conflicts of Interest

## Nomenclature

A | specific surface area/m^{−1} |

D | binary diffusivity for specie i and j/m·s^{−2} |

C_{P,p} | specific heat capacity of phase p/J·kg^{−1}·K^{−1} |

d_{s} | solid particle diameter/m |

E_{gs} | volumetric heat flux/J·m^{−3} |

${\overrightarrow{F}}_{gs}$ | gas-solid drag force/N |

$\overrightarrow{g}$ | gravitational acceleration/m·s^{−2} |

H_{n} | specific enthalpy of reaction n/J·kg^{−1} |

H_{p} | specific enthalpy of phase p/J·kg^{−1} |

$\overline{\overline{I}}$ | identity tensor/- |

k | kinetic constant for reaction/- |

k_{f} | film mass transfer resistance/m·s^{−1} |

k_{p} | thermal conductivity of p phase/W·m^{−1}·K^{−1} |

K_{p} | equilibrium constant of reaction n/- |

M_{i} | molecular weight of specie i/kg·kmol^{−1} |

m_{C-C} | amount of carbon consumed by carbon solution loss reaction/kg |

m_{C-T} | total carbon input from the blast furnace top/kg |

P | pressure/Pa |

Pr | Prandtl number/- |

Re | Reynolds number/- |

R_{n} | rate of reduction reaction n/kmol·m^{−3}·s^{−1} |

Sh | Sherwood number/- |

S_{ϕ} | source term for variable ϕ in Equation (1) |

T_{p} | temperature of phase p/K |

${\overrightarrow{v}}_{p}$ | physical velocity of phase p/m·s^{−1} |

y_{c} | carbon solution loss ratio of coke/% |

Greek Symbols | |

ε_{p} | volume fraction of phase p/- |

ρ_{p} | density of phase p/kg·m^{−3} |

ϕ | general dependent variable in Equation (1) |

Γ_{ϕ} | diffusion coefficient for variable ϕ in Equation (1) |

μ_{p} | viscosity of phase p/kg·m^{−1}·s^{−1} |

${\overline{\overline{\tau}}}_{p}$ | stress tensor of phase p/Pa |

ω | mass fraction/- |

Subscripts | |

g | gas |

s | solid |

p | phase |

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**Figure 1.**Geometric and mesh models and volume fraction distribution of solid phase of blast furnace B in Bayi Steel of Baowu Group (

**a**) geometric model; (

**b**) mesh model; (

**c**) volume fraction distribution of solid phase.

Items. | ϕ | Γ | S_{ϕ} |
---|---|---|---|

continuity | 1 | 0 | ${M}_{O}\cdot {\displaystyle \sum _{n=1}^{N}{R}_{n}}$ |

$-{M}_{O}\cdot {\displaystyle \sum _{n=1}^{N}{R}_{n}}$ | |||

momentum | ${\overrightarrow{v}}_{g}$ | 0 | $\nabla \cdot {\overline{\overline{\tau}}}_{g}+{\epsilon}_{g}(-\nabla P+{\rho}_{g}\cdot \overrightarrow{g})+{\overrightarrow{F}}_{gs}$ |

${\overrightarrow{v}}_{s}$ | $\nabla \cdot {\overline{\overline{\tau}}}_{s}+{\epsilon}_{s}(-\nabla P+{\rho}_{s}\cdot \overrightarrow{g})$ | ||

energy | H_{g} | K_{g}/C_{P,g} | ${E}_{gs}+{M}_{O}\cdot {\displaystyle \sum _{n=1}^{N}({R}_{n}}\cdot \Delta {H}_{n}^{T})$ |

H_{s} | K_{s}/C_{P,s} | $-{E}_{gs}+{M}_{O}\cdot {\displaystyle \sum _{n=1}^{N}({R}_{n}}\cdot \Delta {H}_{n}^{T})$ |

_{n}refers to different reactions.

Parameters | Value | Unit |
---|---|---|

Coke rate | 455 | kg·ton HM^{−1} |

PCI rate | 101 | kg·ton HM^{−1} |

Production | 4456 | ton HM·d^{−1} |

Blast flowrate | 4198 | Nm^{3}·min^{−1} |

Blast temperature | 1122 | °C |

Oxygen enrichment ratio | 0 | % |

Blast pressure | 339 | kPa |

Blast humidity | 5.00 | g·m^{−3} |

Burden feed amount | 7508 | ton·d^{−1} |

Parameters | Practical Value | Simulated Value | Relative Error |
---|---|---|---|

top gas composition in mole fraction | |||

CO | 22.8% | 24.0% | 5.3% |

CO_{2} | 18.6% | 18.9% | 1.6% |

H_{2} | 2.45% | 2.38% | 2.9% |

top gas temperature | 229.6 °C | 244.0 °C | 6.3% |

top gas pressure | 194.7 kPa | 200.6 kPa | 3.0% |

Oxygen Enrichment Ratio (%) | 0 (Base) | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 |
---|---|---|---|---|---|---|

Production (ton HM·day^{−1}) | 4431 | 4577 | 4723 | 4869 | 5015 | 5161 |

Coke rate (kg·ton HM^{−1}) | 462 | 457 | 452 | 447 | 442 | 437 |

Coal rate (kg·ton HM^{−1}) | 97 | 105 | 113 | 121 | 129 | 137 |

Element | CH_{4} | H_{2} | CO_{2} | CO | O_{2} | N_{2} |
---|---|---|---|---|---|---|

Volume fraction(vol%) | 26.0 | 58.0 | 2.0 | 8.0 | 0.5 | 5.5 |

Proportion of Steel Scrap Added (%) | 2 | 4 | 6 | 8 | 10 |
---|---|---|---|---|---|

Absolute value(ton·day^{−1}) | 149.7 | 299.3 | 448.9 | 598.6 | 748.3 |

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## Share and Cite

**MDPI and ACS Style**

Kou, M.; Zhou, H.; Wang, L.P.; Hong, Z.; Yao, S.; Xu, H.; Wu, S.
Numerical Simulation of Effects of Different Operational Parameters on the Carbon Solution Loss Ratio of Coke inside Blast Furnace. *Processes* **2019**, *7*, 528.
https://doi.org/10.3390/pr7080528

**AMA Style**

Kou M, Zhou H, Wang LP, Hong Z, Yao S, Xu H, Wu S.
Numerical Simulation of Effects of Different Operational Parameters on the Carbon Solution Loss Ratio of Coke inside Blast Furnace. *Processes*. 2019; 7(8):528.
https://doi.org/10.3390/pr7080528

**Chicago/Turabian Style**

Kou, Mingyin, Heng Zhou, Li Pang Wang, Zhibin Hong, Shun Yao, Haifa Xu, and Shengli Wu.
2019. "Numerical Simulation of Effects of Different Operational Parameters on the Carbon Solution Loss Ratio of Coke inside Blast Furnace" *Processes* 7, no. 8: 528.
https://doi.org/10.3390/pr7080528