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Search Completed | Title | Technological and Economical Survey of Organic Rankine Cycle Systems
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Text | Technological and Economical Survey of Organic Rankine Cycle Systems | 001
Technological and Economical Survey of Organic Rankine Cycle Systems
Sylvain Quoilin and Vincent Lemort
Thermodynamics Laboratory University of Liège Campus du Sart Tilman B49 B-4000 Liège, BELGIUM email@example.com
This paper presents an overview of current R&D in the field of small and middle scale Organic Rankine Cycles (ORC’s). Major ORC’s applications are described and their technical and economical maturity is analyzed. The paper also emphasizes the selection criteria for the expander and for the working fluid.
Keywords: Organic Rankine cycles, heat recovery, biomass, combined heat power, Solar ORC, fluid selection, ORC expanders
The interest for low grade heat recovery has been growing for the last ten years, due to the increasing concern over energy shortage and global warming.
An important number of new solutions have been proposed to generate electricity from low temperature heat sources. Among the proposed solutions, the Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC) system is the most widely used. This system involves the same components as in a conventional steam power plant (a boiler, a work-producing expansion device, a condenser and a pump). However, for such a system, the working fluid is an organic component characterized by a lower ebullition temperature than water and allowing reduced evaporating temperatures.
The success of the ORC technology can be partly explained by its modular feature: a similar ORC system can be used, with little modifications, in conjunction with various heat sources. This success was reinforced by the high technological maturity of most of its components, due to their extensive use in refrigeration applications. Moreover, unlike with conventional power cycles, local and small scale power generation is made possible by this technology.
Today, Organic Rankine Cycles are commercially available in the MW power range. However very few solutions are actually suitable for the kW scale. This paper presents an overview of current R&D in the field of small-scale ORC’s. Major small-scale ORC’s applications are analyzed and their technical and economical maturity is discussed.
2. SMALL AND MIDDLE SCALE ORC TECHNOLOGY APPLICATIONS 2.1. Biomass combined heat and power
Biomass is widely available in a number of agricultural of industrial processes such as agricultural waste or wood industry. It is best used locally for two main reasons : the energy density of biomass is low, which increases transportation costs; and heat and electricity demand are usually available on-site, which makes
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