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Ammonia-Hydrogen Combustion in Micro Gas Turbines

Project funded under the 8th EIGJAPAN_JC 2021

Duration ► 36 months
Start ► March 2022
ANR funding ► 151 k€


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The urgent need for low-emission and low-carbon solutions in distributed power generation and transport is often paired with recent trends towards increasingly high power densities. As a practical consequence, an important class of future gas turbines will be fired using novel carbon-free fuels, i.e., hydrogen (H2) and/or ammonia (NH3).

Being able to burn these alternative fuels in gas turbines while conserving today’s severe pollutants’ emissions and efficiency standards will require precise answers to several open questions of fundamental scientific character jointly with an assessment of possible consequences on the gas turbine cycle performance.

The ADONIS project targets micro gas turbines (MGT) in the 100 kWel power range using NH3/H2 blends. Ammonia can be conveniently used as a hydrogen-carrying molecule, for high density storage and long-distance transportation. It can be converted back into H2, or directly used for electricity production by combustion in a gas turbine – pure or in blends.



The project ADONIS seeks answers to fundamental open research questions of high relevance to the development of MGT related to the following topics :

  • Flame-wall interaction,
  • Combustion Dynamics,
  • Fuel injection strategy.

All three topics significantly impact the stability, efficiency, emissions and, ultimately, overall cycle performance of the gas turbine. Therefore, new fundamental insights gained in the investigation of these three topics will be condensed, as main project result, to provide an updated, state-of-the-art realistic assessment of the gas turbine cycle performance.




Partenaires ADONIS


Work Plan

The project will produce a state-of-the-art assessment of the MGT cycle performance (WP1) underpinned by three constitutive building blocks that address three important open questions of fundamental scientific nature. These are: flame-wall interaction in ammonia/hydrogen flames (WP2), thermoacoustic characteristics of ammonia/hydrogen flames of (WP3) and fuel injection optimization, mixture preparation and ignition (WP4).

  • WP1 : Design and optimization, using thermodynamic cycle and CFD simulations, of a generic MGT fueled with ammonia, both for power generation as well as for a cogeneration configuration (SUT). The combustion chamber geometry will be selected based on existing gas turbine designs available from the open literature (e.g. Turbec T100).
  • WP2 : Advancement of basic scientific knowledge in the field of laminar and turbulent near-wall reactive flows deploying both state-of-the-art experimental measurements (AIST/UT) and numerical modelling (SINTEF) building upon previous work on the topic of flame-wall interactions in Japan and Norway.
  • WP3 : The thermoacoustic characteristics of ammonia-hydrogen flames is investigated aiming to close the currently existing knowledge gap. Low-order models that are able to represent the flame response to acoustic disturbances will be created (ZHAW) based on numerical simulations (SINTEF) and laboratory experiments (AIST).
  • WP4 : The first task of WP4 will concern the realization of an experimental database that characterizes liquid ammonia sprays and subsequent vaporization at different conditions (U Orleans). The second part of the WP aims at using CONVERGETM RANS or/and LES computations in MGT configurations to assess the impact of ammonia vaporization on the combustion process (IFP).


Expected Results

ADONIS is expected to be a significant step towards mastering NH3/H2 combustion in MGTs. As an efficient energy carrier, NH3 allows for safe and efficient long-term storage of large quantities of H2, and long-range maritime transport of renewable energy, equilibrating global energy imbalance. Its usage in MGTs could be especially relevant for small, isolated or insular communities, which currently often rely on power generation with fossil fuels

As part of the research project, essential questions are being investigated that are necessary to reduce the CO2 emissions of future energy supply. The ADONIS project thus makes an important contribution to achieving the climate goals of the Paris Agreement and the Energy Strategy 2050.


Contact : Christine ROUSSELLE ⇒