Design criteria and performance of gas turbines in a combined power and power (CPP) plant for electrical power generation
The simple gas turbine engine Operates on the basic Joule-Brayton cycle and it is notorious for its poor thermal efficiency. Several modifications have been made to the simple cycle in order to increase its thermal efficiency but, within the thermal and mechanical stress constrains, the efficiency still ranges between 28 and 35%. However, higher values of energy utilisation efficiency have been claimed in recent years by using low grade heat from the engine exhaust either for district heating or for raising low pressure steam for chemical processes. Both applications are not very attractive in hot countries. The concept of using the low grade thermal energy from the gas turbine exhaust to raise steam in order to drive a steam turbine and generate additional electricity, i. e. the combined power and power or CPP plant would be more attractive in hot countries than the CHP plant. It was hypothesized that the operational parameters, hence the performance of the CPP plant, would depend on the allowable gas turbine entry temperature. Hence, the exhaust gas temperature could not be decided arbitrarily. This thesis deals with the performance of the gas turbine engine operating as a part of the combined power and power plant. In a CPP plant, the gas turbine does not only produce power but also the thermal energy that is required to operate the steam turbine plant at achievable thermal efficiency. The combined gas turbine-steam turbine cycles are thermodynamically analysed. A parametric study for different configurations of the combined gas-steam cycles has been carried out to show the influence of the main parameters on the CPP cycle performance. The parametric study was carried out using realistic values in view of the known constraints and taking into account any feasible future developments. The results of the parametric study show that the maximum CPP cycle efficiency would be at a point for which the gas turbine cycle would have neither its maximum efficiency nor its maximum specific work output. It has been shown that supplementary heating or gas turbine reheating would decrease the CPP cycle efficiency; hence, it could only be justified at low gas turbine inlet temperatures. Also it has been shown that although gas turbine intercooling would enhance the performance of the gas turbine cycle, it would have only a slight effect on the CPP cycle performance. A graphical method for studying operational compatibility, i.e. matching, between gas turbine components has been developed for a steady state or equilibrium operation. The author would like to submit that the graphical method offers a novel and easy to understand approach to the complex problem of component matching. It has been shown that matching conditions between the compressor and the turbine could be satisfied by superimposing the turbine performance characteristics on the compressor performance characteristics providing the axes of both were normalised. This technique can serve as a valuable tool to determine the operating range and the engine running line. Furthermore, it would decide whether the gas turbine engine was operating in a region of adequate compressor and turbine efficiencies. A computer program capable of simulating the steady state off-design conditions of the gas turbine engine as part of the CPP plant has been developed. The program was written in Visual Basic. Also, another program was developed to simulate the steady state off-design operation of the steam turbine power plant. A combination of both programs was used to simulate the combined power plant. Finally, it could be claimed that the computer simulation of the CPP plant makes significant contribution to the design of thermal power plants as it would help in investigating the effects of the performance characteristics of the components on the performance of complete engines at the design and off-design conditions. This investigation of the CPP plant performance can be carried out at the design and engineering stages and thus help to reduce the cost of manufacturing and testing the expensive prototype engines.