The Role of the Ceramic Heat Exchanger in Energy and Resource Conservation

[+] Author and Article Information
C. F. McDonald

General Atomic Company, P.O. Box 81608, San Diego, CA 92138

J. Eng. Power 102(2), 303-315 (Apr 01, 1980) (13 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3230253 History: Received December 18, 1978; Online September 28, 2009


The approaching era of strict energy conservation and eventual energy shortage will have a profound effect on the design of process and power-producing plants, since in the future maximum fuel utilization efficiency will be of the essence. The intrinsic economic worth of industrial reject and exhaust heat is too great to merely discharge to the environment, and means of utilizing this energy by improved process efficiency, or by cogeneration, must be quickly brought to the commercial stage. For future power conversion systems, and in particular open- and closed-cycle gas turbines, emphasis will be placed on maximizing efficiency, and in many cases this can be achieved only by significant increases in operating temperatures. For future gas turbines, process heat plants, chemical plants, basic industries, and waste heat recovery applications, the high level of reject temperature will necessitate the utilization of ceramic heat exchangers for thermal energy recovery. In this paper, current development activities in the field of ceramic heat exchangers for gas turbine applications are discussed, and it is projected that the encouraging results from these programs will stimulate a broader interest in high-temperature waste heat energy recovery. The future role the ceramic heat exchanger will play in energy recovery for different industrial applications is emphasized, and appropriate heat exchanger design criteria, types of construction, surface geometries, and development activities are briefly discussed.

Copyright © 1980 by ASME
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