Improving the OTEC Power Plant Performance by Metal Hydride Energy Systems

[+] Author and Article Information
M. Gambini

Department of Physical and Energetic Sciences and Technologies, University of Rome “Tor Vergata,” 00133 Rome, Italy

J. Energy Resour. Technol 119(2), 145-151 (Jun 01, 1997) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2794978 History: Received January 24, 1995; Revised February 01, 1997; Online November 06, 2007


A new system to improve the present OTEC (ocean thermal energy conversion) power plant performance is here presented. This is a metal hydride energy system operating as a “temperature upgrading” device which allows an increase of the OTEC plant working fluid temperature at the turbine inlet. The integrated MHTUP (metal hydride temperature upgrading)—OTEC plant has been investigated, taking into account the dynamic operations of MHTUP system and the OTEC pumping power increase due to the water circulation in the MHTUP system. The results show an increase in the OTEC net power of about 20 percent and the technological feasibility of the proposal. The large amounts of metal hydride and of heat transfer surface required by MHTUP system involve a critical situation from an economical point of view. The further analysis, particularly regarding the performance optimization and new plant arrangement of the MHTUP system, have to be developed in order to attain the economical feasibility of the proposal.

Copyright © 1997 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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