Analysis of Flow Patterns inside an Autothermal Gasoline Reformer
The present paper concentrates on the option of catalytic autothermal reforming of gasoline for fuel cell applications. Major parameters of this process are the “Steam to Carbon Ratio” S/C and the air to fuel ratio λ. Computations assuming thermodynamic equilibrium in the autothermal reactor outlet (ATR) were carried out to attain information about their proper choice, as failure in adjusting the parameters within narrow limits has severe consequences on the reforming process. In order to quantify velocity distribution just ahead the catalyst and to evaluate mixing uniformity we designed an ATR featuring an optical access: Thus flow visualization using PIV (Particle Image Velocimetry) and LIF (Laser Induced Fluorescence) technique is possible. Preliminary PIV-results are presented and compared with CFD computations (Computational Fluid D ynamics).