ORC analysis of radial inflow turbine and R245fa

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ORC analysis of radial inflow turbine and R245fa ( orc-analysis-radial-inflow-turbine-and-r245fa )

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2 Advances in Mechanical Engineering compared four Rankine system arrangements and six refrigerants and selected the best arrangement for each refrigerant. Therefore, ORC has been widely studied and applied in the field of low-temperature heat recovery. In ORC systems, the key component is the expan- der. The expansion process of organic fluids occurs in the expander, which converts the internal energy of the fluid into mechanical energy. Therefore, the efficiency and performance of the expander have a direct impact on the performance of the ORC system. According to their movements and structures, expanders can be divided into two types: the velocity type and the vol- ume type.8 Velocity expanders generate high speed by passing high-temperature and high-pressure fluids through nozzles and blades, thus generating mechanical energy. Example includes turbine expanders, which are often used in large- and medium-sized systems.9,10 Volumetric expanders expand the fluid directly, use the high pressure generated to rotate the shaft and generate mechanical energy. Examples of volumetric expanders are the scroll expander and the screw expander. Therefore, volumetric expander is widely used in micro-ORC power generation systems.11 Lemort et al.12 conducted an experimental study on a closed scroll expander with R245fa as the working fluid. Their experimental results showed that the adia- batic efficiency of the expander was 71.03%, and the maximum output power was 2.2kW. Based on the measured data, a semi-empirical theoretical model of the scroll expander was defined. Quoilin et al.13 con- structed a thermodynamic model for the scroll expan- sion mechanism that is applied to the ORC system. Zhe-Ming et al.14 elaborated and summarised the results obtained by several researchers regarding vari- ous aspects of scroll machinery. Kang15 performed experiments using a radial turbine as an expander and R245fa as the working fluid in an ORC system. The experimental results showed that the system could gen- erate an output power of 32.7kW, while the system efficiency and turbine insulation efficiency could attain values of 5.22% and 78.7%, respectively. Harinick et al.16 numerically simulated the flow characteristics in an ORC radial turbine nozzle with toluene, which has a high expansion ratio, as the working fluid. The ther- mal properties of the working fluid were accurately estimated, and the effects of different solvers, thermo- dynamic models and turbulence models on the flow were analysed. Numerical investigations and three-dimensional simulations play an important role in turbine design and in the improvement of system performance. Hamdi et al.17 studied a radial inflow two-stage turbine through an accurate computational fluid dynamics simulation interfaced with thermodynamic models and improved the numerical model based on the experimen- tal results. Lim et al.18 designed and optimised the turbine gen- erator for an ORC system at a 200 kW grade, through rotor dynamic analysis, rotor balancing, ball bearing stabilisation and spin tests. Finally, the performance of the improved turbine was evaluated in the ORC system; these procedures may be used as a reference to develop a modified ORC turbine. Bao and Zhao19 summarised the advantages and dis- advantages of various expanders used in the ORC sys- tem. They indicated that scroll and multi-vane expanders are applicable for power outputs smaller than 10kW, while turbine and screw expanders are suitable for power outputs greater than 20 kW. In pre- vious studies, turbines have been used in large- and medium-sized ORC systems, and these turbines gener- ated more power and attained higher efficiencies in the large-scale systems. For turbines, there is almost no application of ORC system less than 20 kW. Radial turbine is a kind of speed expander that has the characteristics of high speed and high efficiency. Small turbines must have large rotational speed to pro- duce sufficient output power. Otherwise, extremely large volumes will reduce its efficiency. For the same displace- ment, the turbine with higher rotational speed has greater output power and efficiency. A radial inflow tur- bine designed to have a speed of 30,000r/min and an isentropic efficiency greater than 85% is adopted. The designed turbine is miniaturised and tested in the ORC system with the maximum rated output power of 20 kW. In the case of a low-temperature heat source (\150°C), the efficiency of the ORC power generation system is low; improving the efficiency of expander can effectively improve the power generation capacity of the system. The turbine is miniaturised such that it may be used in a small ORC system. For turbines, the energy loss is primarily due to the design being unsuita- ble for the specific operating conditions of the system. According to the specific experimental conditions, con- sidering the thermal properties of R245fa (i.e. evapora- tion temperature of 90°C–125°C, condensation temperature of 25°C–40°C, inlet turbine superheat of 5°C, inlet pressure of 1.74 MPa, expansion ratio of 10, maximum flow rate of 3000L/h and output power of 20kW), a radial inflow turbine suitable for the ORC system is designed and tested in the ORC power gener- ation system. The ORC system is designed to replicate large-scale, commercially used systems, to reproduce real-world scenarios. A preheater and a superheater are installed, and the system is not simplified. Turbine generator The design conditions of the radial inflow turbine are determined according to the operating conditions of

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