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Conversion and Environmental Process Simulator

The conversion and environmental process simulator (CEPS) is used to research and investigate the transformation of toxic trace metals, such as mercury, arsenic, and lead, during the combustion of coal and other fuels or waste materials. CEPS is capable of producing gas and particulate samples, which are analyzed for trace metals to elucidate transformation mechanisms. CEPS is also used to test small-scale versions of pollution control technologies, including baghouse and wet scrubber technologies.

The CEPS is designed to nominally top-fire 4.4 lb/hr (2 kg/hr) of pulverized coal, with a heat input of 40,000 Btu/hr. Other solid or liquid fuels can be utilized with slight system modifications. It is designed to maintain the flue gas (approximately 8 scfm) generated by the combustion of the fuel at a maximum of 1500°C (2732°F) for the first 12 ft of the system, which is referred to as the radiant zone. The first 9 ft of the heated radiant zone has an inside diameter of 6 in., with the last heated zone reducing down to 3 in. The radiant zone exit is through a horizontal 1.5-in.-i.d. ceramic tube. A portion of the particulate is removed before the convective pass section of the CEPS. After the convective section, flue gas flows through an optional ash-fouling test section, a cyclone for final removal of particulate, an air eductor, and up to a stack through the roof of the pilot facility at the EERC. The system is designed so that the cyclone can be replaced by one of the proposed small-scale control technologies.

The CEPS is a sealed system maintained under a slight vacuum with an eductor. Electrically heated sections have ceramic tubes exposed to four high-temperature molybdenum silicide heating elements surrounded by high-temperature, fibrous insulating board. Access to the inside of the combustor is available at a number of locations in the radiant zone for sampling, observation, and optical analyses. Access ports penetrate through a combination of cast, abrasion-resistant insulating refractory and high-temperature, fibrous insulating board. The overall system is housed inside a series of rectangular stainless steel sections bolted together.