Date: Thursday, May 11th, 2023
Time: 3.30 - 4.30 PM
Venue: KAUST, Building 5, Level 5, Room 5209
Title: ALTERNATIVE MGT CYCLES – Cycle Humidification for Improved Efficiency and Flexibility
Abstract: Micro gas turbines (mGTs) offer several advantages for small-scale combined heat and power (CHP) production compared to their main competitors, the internal combustion engines (ICEs), such as low vibration level, cleaner exhaust, and less maintenance. The major drawback is their lower electrical efficiency, which makes them economically less attractive and explains their low market penetration. Next to improving the efficiency of the components of the traditional recuperated mGT, shifting toward more innovative cycles may help enhance the performance and flexibility of mGTs. One interesting solution is the introduction of water in the mGT cycle—either as auto-raised steam or hot liquid—preheated with the waste heat from the exhaust gases. The so-called humidification of the mGT cycle has the potential of increasing the electrical performance and flexibility of the mGT, resulting in higher profitability. During my talk, I will give a comprehensive overview of the research and development of humidified mGTs, sharing my deep experimental knowledge on the subject. Furthermore, I will engage in a detailed discussion on the effect of humidification, using different cycle layouts, on both the improvement of the cycle efficiency and flexibility and the performance of the specific mGT components. Finally, I conclude by pinpointing the technological challenges that need to be overcome for humidified mGTs to be viable.
BIO: Prof. Ward De Paepe is currently working as an Assistant Professor at the University of Mons (UMONS), Belgium. Before becoming a professor at UMONS, he worked both at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB, where he did his Ph.D. in the field of cycle humidification for improved micro gas turbine operational flexibility) and Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB, where he worked as a post-doctoral researcher on humidified micro gas turbine combustion). His major activities are currently focused on the development of innovative, sustainable, carbon-clean, highly flexible cycles for small- to medium-scale power production for integration in the energy transition toward fully renewable production. In this research, he focuses on possible synergies between traditional power production from engines -- (micro) Gas Turbine (GT) based --, renewable energy production, and energy storage.