This paper reports a numerical study of the heat transfer characteristics of porous radiant burners, which have significant advantages over conventional burners. The heat transfer characteristics are investigated using a one-dimensional conduction, convection, and radiation model. The combustion phenomenon is modeled as spatially dependent heat generation. Nonlocal thermal equilibrium between the gas and solid phases is accounted for by using separate energy equations for the two phases. The solid matrix is assumed to emit, absorb, and scatter radiant energy. The spherical harmonics approximation is used to solve the radiative transfer equation. The coupled energy equations and the radiative transfer equations are solved using a numerical iterative procedure. The effects of the various factors on the performance of porous radiant burners are determined. It is revealed that for a given rate of heat generation, large optical thicknesses and high heat transfer coefficients between the solid and gas phases are desirable for maximizing radiant output. Also, low solid thermal conductivities, scattering albedos and flow velocities, and high inlet environment reflectivities produced high radiant output.

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