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Design method and performance prediction for radial-inflow turbines of high-temperature mini-Organic Rankine Cycle power systems OPEN ACCESS

[+] Author and Article Information
Carlo Maria De Servi

Researcher, Flemish Institute for Technology Research (VITO), Mol, Belgium
carlo.deservi@vito.be

Matteo Burigana

Researcher, Propulsion and Power, Aerospace Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Delft, The Netherlands
matteo@burigana.it

Matteo Pini

Assistant Professor, Propulsion and Power, Aerospace Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Delft, The Netherlands
m.pini@tudelft.nl

Piero Colonna

Full Professor, Propulsion and Power, Aerospace Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Delft, The Netherlands
p.colonna@tudelft.nl

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4043973 History: Received July 09, 2018; Revised June 06, 2019

Abstract

The realization of commercial mini organic Rankine Cycle (ORC) power systems (tens of kW of power output) is currently pursued by means of various research and development activities. The application driving most of the efforts is the waste heat recovery from long-haul truck engines. Obtaining an efficient mini radial inflow turbine, arguably the most suitable type of expander for this application, is particularly challenging, given the small mass flow rate, and the occurrence of non-ideal compressible fluid dynamic effects in the stator. Available design methods are currently based on guidelines and loss models developed mainly for turbo-chargers. The preliminary geometry is subsequently adapted by means of computational fluid-dynamic calculations with codes that are not validated in case of non ideal compressible flows of organic fluids. An experimental 10 kW mini-ORC radial inflow turbine will be realized and tested in the Propulsion and Power Laboratory of the Delft university of Technology, with the aim of providing measurement datasets for the validation of CFD tools and the calibration of empirical loss models. The fluid dynamic design and characterization of this machine is reported here. Results indicate that the optimal layout of mini-ORC turbines significantly differ from that of radial-inflow turbines utilized in more traditional applications, confirming the need for experimental campaigns to support the conception of new design practices.

Copyright (c) 2019 by ASME
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