Extensive experiments were carried out in the past in order to obtain kinetics data on the pyrolysis of coal particles and the char reactions. The literature survey distinctively reveals two kinds of studies: (i) Individual Particle Combustion (IPC) and (ii) Combustion of Particle Streams or Clouds. The experimental data obtained with particle streams are normally interpreted using IPC models with the a priori assumption that the cloud is dilute. But the term “dilute” is rarely quantified and justified considering the collective behavior of a cloud of particles. The group combustion model accounts for the reduction in burning rate due to the collective behavior of a large number of particles. While the spherical group combustion model may be employed for coal/char spray combustion modeling, the cylindrical group combustion model is more useful in interpreting the experimental data obtained with a monosized stream of particles. Hence a cylindrical group combustion model is presented here. As in the case of spherical group combustion models, there exist three modes of combustion: (i) Individual Particle Combustion (IPC), (ii) Group Combustion (GC), and (iii) Sheath Combustion (SC). Within the range of parameters studied, it appears that the cylindrical and spherical cloud combustion models yield similar results on nondimensional cloud burning rates and on the combustion modes of a cloud of particles. The results from group theory are then used to identify the mode of combustion (IPC, GC, or SC) and to interpret the experimental data.

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