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Computational Fluid Dynamic (CFD) Investigation of NIST’s Scale Model Smokestack Simulator



Aaron N. Johnson, Jacob E. Ricker, Joey T. Boyd


Accurate flow measurements are essential to quantifying the amount of greenhouse gases (GHGs) and other pollutants emitted from the smokestacks of coal-fired power plants (CFPPs). However, flow measurement accuracy is limited by the adverse flow conditions (i.e., asymmetric swirling flow) prevalent in CFPP smokestacks. Although protocols have been developed to measure flow, the uncertainty of flow measurements has not been quantified and is not documented. Quantifying the uncertainty of smokestack flow measurements and establishing a calibration platform with documented traceability to the derived SI unit of flow will be important should future regulations place a price on GHG emissions. NIST is constructing a 1/10th scale model smokestack simulator (SMSS) to determine the accuracy of CFPP smokestack flow measurements with a 1 % uncertainty at a 95 % confidence level. The SMSS is scheduled to be completed by 2014. This manuscript discusses the design of the SMSS and presents CFD predictions of the velocity field over the expected range of operating conditions.
Proceedings Title
Measurement Science Conference (MSC) 2013
Conference Dates
March 20-22, 2013
Conference Location


Smokestack flow measurements, Greenhouse Gases, Coal-Fired Power Plants, Pitot Traverse, CEMS flow meters


Johnson, A. , Ricker, J. and Boyd, J. (2013), Computational Fluid Dynamic (CFD) Investigation of NIST’s Scale Model Smokestack Simulator, Measurement Science Conference (MSC) 2013, ANAHEIM, CA (Accessed June 12, 2024)


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Created March 27, 2013, Updated February 19, 2017