Trigeneration scheme for a natural gas liquids extraction plant in the Middle East

Valérie Eveloy, Peter Rodgers, Sahil Popli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Natural gas processing plants in the Persian Gulf face extreme climatic conditions that constrain their gas turbine (GT) power generation and cooling capacities. However, due to a past history of low hydrocarbon prices, such plants have not fully exploited their waste heat recovery potential to date. The techno-economic performance of a combined cooling, heating and power (CCHP) scheme designed to enhance the energy efficiency of a major natural gas liquids extraction plant in the Persian Gulf is assessed. The trigeneration scheme utilizes double-effect water-lithium bromide absorption refrigeration powered by steam generated from GT exhaust gas waste heat to provide both GT compressor inlet air- and process gas cooling. Part of the generated steam is also used for process gas heating. Thermodynamic modeling reveals that recovery of 82 MW of GT waste heat would provide additional cooling and heating capacities of 75 MW and 24 MW to the plant, respectively, thereby permitting elimination of a 28 MW GT, and existing cooling and heating equipment. GT compressor inlet air cooling alone yields approximately 151 GW h of additional electric power annually, highlighting the effectiveness of absorption refrigeration in meeting compressor inlet air cooling loads throughout the year in the Gulf climate. The overall net annual operating expenditure savings contributed by the CCHP system would average approximately 14.6 million US$ over its lifespan, which corresponds to average yearly savings of 190 MMSCM of natural gas. The CCHP scheme economic payback period is conservatively estimated at 2.7 years based on current utility and domestic gas prices. The net present value of the CCHP system is estimated at 158 million USD, with an internal rate of return of 39%.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)204-218
Number of pages15
JournalEnergy Conversion and Management
StatePublished - 2014


  • Absorption refrigeration
  • CCHP
  • Gas turbine
  • Natural gas
  • Trigeneration
  • Waste heat utilization


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