Increasing the efficiency of cogeneration units using an organic rankine cycle
Tutor / director / evaluatorDudáš, Jozef
Document typeBachelor thesis
Rights accessRestricted access - author's decision
Due to the society progress, the consumption of energy is dramatically increasing. Moreover, the utilization of fossil fuels generates pollution that is affecting to the environment. The utilization of renewable sources of energy and the improvement of the current electricity generation technologies is vital to ensure the development of the world. Cogeneration is a technology of electricity generation. Its main benefit compared with other power plants is the increase of efficiency, as the energy wasted in the condensation of the traditional Rankine cycle is used as utilizable heat. In this study, the electrical enhancement of the output power of a cogeneration unit with an organic Rankine cycle (ORC) unit will be analyzed. An ORC uses an organic compound instead of water as the working fluid, and offers an important advantage regarding conventional Rankine cycle as it is capable of generating electricity from low to medium temperature heat sources. Different working fluids have been analyzed for the ORC, and its selection depended on the electrical enhancement and its efficiency. N-Hexane is the chosen compound, enhancing the electrical generation in a 4.31 %. Cogeneration increases the overall efficiency in a 27.3 %. Furthermore, the possibility of using trigeneration to fulfill the cold requirements of a warm country as Spain has been studied. A theoretical case has been analyzed in order to evaluate the cooling power of the unit. It is capable to maintain the temperature of a building at 20.8 ºC when the outside temperature is 35 ºC. The economic viability of the project has been studied considering that the profit of the installation is the money saved when no energy or gas needs to be bought to the energy companies. The economical balance shows an annual benefit of 585,347 €, with a return period around 5 years. Finally, the safety of the installation has been analyzed utilizing the TNT equivalent method. The potential harm of the unit is small, with a potential of causing deceases if the distance to the installation is closer than 5.76 m.
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