Comparison of the Organic Flash Cycle (OFC) to other advanced vapor cycles for intermediate and high temperature waste heat reclamation and solar thermal energy

Tony Ho, Samuel S. Mao, Ralph Greif

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

153 Scopus citations

Abstract

The Organic Flash Cycle (OFC) is proposed as a vapor power cycle that could potentially improve the efficiency with which high and intermediate temperature finite thermal sources are utilized. The OFC's aim is to improve temperature matching and reduce exergy losses during heat addition. A theoretical investigation is conducted using high accuracy equations of state such as BACKONE, Span-Wagner, and REFPROP in a detailed thermodynamic and exergetic analysis. The study examines 10 different aromatic hydrocarbons and siloxanes as potential working fluids. Comparisons are drawn between the OFC and an optimized basic Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC), a zeotropic Rankine cycle using a binary ammonia-water mixture, and a transcritical CO2 cycle. Results showed aromatic hydrocarbons to be the better suited working fluid for the ORC and OFC due to higher power output and less complex turbine designs. Results also showed that the single flash OFC achieves comparable utilization efficiencies to the optimized basic ORC. Although the OFC improved heat addition exergetic efficiency, this advantage was negated by irreversibilities introduced during flash evaporation. A number of potentially significant improvements to the OFC are possible though which includes using a secondary flash stage or replacing the throttling valve with a two-phase expander.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)213-223
Number of pages11
JournalEnergy
Volume42
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2012

Keywords

  • Exergy analysis
  • Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC)
  • Solar thermal
  • Vapor cycle
  • Waste heat

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