Research Papers: Energy Conversion/Systems

Design, Analysis and Optimization of a Micro-CHP System Based on Organic Rankine Cycle for Ultralow Grade Thermal Energy Recovery

[+] Author and Article Information
Davide Ziviani

Wipomo, LLC,
1745 Addison Way,
Hayward, CA 94554

Asfaw Beyene

San Diego State University,
5500 Campanile Drive,
San Diego, CA 92182-5102

Mauro Venturini

Università degli Studi di Ferrara,
Via Giuseppe Saragat, 1,
Ferrara 44122, Italy

Contributed by the Advanced Energy Systems Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENERGY RESOURCES TECHNOLOGY. Manuscript received December 12, 2012; final manuscript received June 12, 2013; published online September 12, 2013. Assoc. Editor: S. O. Bade Shrestha.

J. Energy Resour. Technol 136(1), 011602 (Sep 12, 2013) (11 pages) Paper No: JERT-12-1288; doi: 10.1115/1.4024858 History: Received December 12, 2012; Revised June 12, 2013

This paper presents the results of the application of an advanced thermodynamic model developed by the authors for the simulation of Organic Rankine Cycles (ORCs). The model allows ORC simulation both for steady and transient analysis. The expander, selected to be a scroll expander, is modeled in detail by decomposing the behavior of the fluid stream into several steps. The energy source is coupled with the system through a plate heat exchanger (PHE), which is modeled using an iterative sub-heat exchanger modeling approach. The considered ORC system uses solar thermal energy for ultralow grade thermal energy recovery. The simulation model is used to investigate the influence of ORC characteristic parameters related to the working medium, hot reservoir and component efficiencies for the purpose of optimizing the ORC system efficiency and power output. Moreover, dynamic response of the ORC is also evaluated for two scenarios, i.e. (i) supplying electricity for a typical residential user and (ii) being driven by a hot reservoir. Finally, the simulation model is used to evaluate ORC capability to meet electric, thermal and cooling loads of a single residential building, for typical temperatures of the hot water exiting from a solar collector.

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Fig. 1

Complete ORC cycle simulation model developed in AMESim® environment and thermodynamic states

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Fig. 2

ORC electric efficiency versus expander inlet pressure for different working fluids

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Fig. 3

ORC electric efficiency and R245fa quality at expander inlet section versus hot water temperature for three ORC working fluid mass flow rate values

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Fig. 4

Influence of expander isentropic efficiency on ORC electric efficiency at different rotational speeds

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Fig. 5

Dynamic response of the ORC power output to two ORC working fluid mass flow rate variations

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Fig. 6

Daily variation of the ORC electric power output following a typical hot water temperature profile from solar collectors

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Fig. 7

Solar thermal collector water outlet temperature profiles during midwinter and midsummer conditions [73,75]

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Fig. 8

Solar-driven ORC system during a winter day: electric and thermal demand of a residential user and ORC electric and thermal power output

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Fig. 9

Solar-driven ORC system during a summer day: electric and thermal demand of a residential user and ORC electric and thermal power output




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