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research-article

Towards higher micro Gas Turbine efficiency and flexibility --- Humidified mGTs: A Review.

[+] Author and Article Information
Ward De Paepe

post-doctoral researcher Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) Aero-Thermo-Mechanical Department (ATM) Avenue Franklin Roosevelt 50 1050 Brussels, Belgium
wdepaepe@ulb.ac.be

Marina Montero Carrero

Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) Thermo and Fluid dynamics (FLOW) Faculty of Engineering Pleinlaan 2, 1050 Brussels, Belgium
mmontero@vub.ac.be

Svend Bram

Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) Thermo and Fluid dynamics (FLOW) Faculty of Engineering Pleinlaan 2, 1050 Brussels, Belgium
svend.bram@vub.be

Alessandro Parente

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) Aero-Thermo-Mechanical Department (ATM), Avenue Franklin Roosevelt 50, 1050 Brussels, Belgium
alparent@ulb.ac.be

Francesco Contino

Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) Thermo and Fluid dynamics (FLOW) Faculty of Engineering Pleinlaan 2, 1050 Brussels, Belgium
fcontino@vub.ac.be

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4038365 History: Received July 17, 2017; Revised August 30, 2017

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. Shifting towards more innovative cycles may help enhancing the performance and the flexibility of mGTs. One interesting solution is the introduction of water ¬either as auto-raised steam or hot liquid¬, in the mGT cycle. The so-called humidification of the mGT cycle has the potential of increasing the electrical performance and flexibility of the mGT, resulting in a higher profitability. However, despite the proven advantages of mGT humidification, only few of these engines have been experimentally tested and up to now, no cycle is commercially available. With this paper, we give a comprehensive review of the literature on research and development of humidified mGTs: we examine the effect of humidification both on the improvement of the cycle efficiency and flexibility and on the performance of the specific mGT components. Additionally, we will present the different possible layouts, both focusing on the numerical and experimental work. Finally, we pinpoint the technological challenges that need to be overcome for humidified mGTs to be viable. In conclusion, humidification of mGT cycles offers great potential for enhancing the cycle's electrical efficiency and flexibility, but further research is necessary to make the technology commercially available.

Copyright (c) 2017 by ASME
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