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Durham University

Research & business

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Publication details for Dr Zhiwei Ma

Bao, Huashan, Ma, Zhiwei & Roskilly, Anthony Paul (2017). An optimised chemisorption cycle for power generation using low grade heat. Applied Energy 186(3): 251-261.

Author(s) from Durham

Abstract

The integration of chemisorption cycle with turbine/expander opens up enormous opportunities of recovering low grade heat to meet different energy demands including heating, cooling and power generation. In the present study, a novel advanced resorption power generation (RPG) cycle with reheating process has been proposed for the first time to significantly improve the thermal efficiency and exergy efficiency of the basic RPG cycle. Such a reheating concept is built on the premise of chemisorption monovariant characteristic and identification of the optimal desorption temperature aiming at producing the maximum work output under the given working conditions. The identified optimal desorption temperature might be lower than the available heat source temperature, and the desorbed ammonia vapour is subsequently reheated to the heat source temperature before it undergoes vapour expansion for power generation. This study explored the potential of the proposed advanced RPG cycle and investigated the system performance using three representative resorption sorbent pairs, including manganese chloride – sodium bromide, manganese chloride – strontium chloride, and strontium chloride – sodium bromide, all with ammonia as the refrigerant. The application of reheating concept can improve the total work output of RPG cycle by 10–600%, depending on different sorbent pairs and different heat source temperatures studied in this work, e.g., when the heat source temperature is at 200 °C, the thermal efficiency is increased by 1.4–4.5 times and the exergy efficiency is boosted by 2.0–8.3 times. Another valuable merit of the proposed RPG cycle is that there is a great potential of considerable amount of additional cooling output without compromising the maximum work output, leading to further improvement of system efficiency. Compared to other bottoming cycles for power generations, the proposed advanced RPG cycle exhibits the highest thermal efficiency when the heat source temperature is between 120 °C and 200 °C.