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Gas Turbines: Cycle Innovations

Preliminary Experimental Results of Integrated Gasification Fuel Cell Operation Using Hardware Simulation

[+] Author and Article Information
Alberto Traverso

 Thermochemical Power Group, University of Genoa, Via Montallegro 1, 16145, Genova, Italyalberto.traverso@unige.it

David Tucker

 National Energy Technology Laboratory, U.S. Department of Energy, Morgantown, WVdavid.tucker@netl.doe.gov

Comas L. Haynes

 Georgia Tech Center for Innovative Fuel, Cell/Battery Technologies, Georgia Tech Research Institute, Atlanta, GA 30332-0823comas.haynes@gtri.gatech.edu

J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power 134(7), 071701 (May 24, 2012) (10 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4005976 History: Received August 10, 2011; Revised September 27, 2011; Published May 24, 2012; Online May 24, 2012

A newly developed integrated gasification fuel cell (IGFC) hybrid system concept has been tested using the Hybrid Performance (Hyper) project hardware-based simulation facility at the U.S. Department of Energy, National Energy Technology Laboratory. The cathode-loop hardware facility, previously connected to the real-time fuel cell model, was integrated with a real-time model of a gasifier of solid (biomass and fossil) fuel. The fuel cells are operated at the compressor delivery pressure, and they are fueled by an updraft atmospheric gasifier, through the syngas conditioning train for tar removal and syngas compression. The system was brought to steady state; then several perturbations in open loop (variable speed) and closed loop (constant speed) were performed in order to characterize the IGFC behavior. Coupled experiments and computations have shown the feasibility of relatively fast control of the plant as well as a possible mitigation strategy to reduce the thermal stress on the fuel cells as a consequence of load variation and change in gasifier operating conditions. Results also provided an insight into the different features of variable versus constant speed operation of the gas turbine section.

Copyright © 2012 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figures

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Figure 1

Hyper facility with corresponding virtual components

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Figure 2

Simplified flow diagram for the hybrid performance simulation facility at NETL

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Figure 3

Fluid domain: transient model finite difference scheme

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Figure 4

Generic reaction scheme used to model cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin pyrolysis (blue and black arrows). Red arrows regard char gasification.

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Figure 5

Gasifier initial mass flow profile. Height: 0 is bottom, 8 is top.

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Figure 6

Gasifier wall initial temperature flow profile. Height: 0 is bottom, 8 is top. Thickness: 0–0.01 is skin, 0.01–0.0500 is insulation, 0.05–0.25 is refractory.

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Figure 7

Fuel cell internal profiles. Node 1, on the left, is fuel and air inlet. Node 20, on the right, is fuel and air outlet (coflow configuration).

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Figure 8

System input perturbations: fuel cell (FC) current and oxidant agent (humid air) to the gasifier

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Figure 9

Gasifier syngas thermal content (before the syngas conditioning unit)

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Figure 10

Gasifier significant temperatures

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Figure 11

Raw syngas composition (top) and zoom in significant fuel gases (bottom)

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Figure 12

Fuel cell main parameters: Nernst voltage, operating fuel cell voltage, utilization factor (Uf)

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Figure 13

Fuel cell temperatures and temperature spatial gradients (along the flow axis)

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Figure 14

Gas turbine flows and pressure

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Figure 15

Gas turbine power and speed

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Figure 16

IGFC cycle temperatures

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