SciTech Connect

Title: Advanced Thermal Storage for Central Receivers with Supercritical Coolants

Advanced Thermal Storage for Central Receivers with Supercritical Coolants The principal objective of the study is to determine if supercritical heat transport fluids in a central receiver power plant, in combination with ceramic thermocline storage systems, offer a reduction in levelized energy cost over a baseline nitrate salt concept. The baseline concept uses a nitrate salt receiver, two-tank (hot and cold) nitrate salt thermal storage, and a subcritical Rankine cycle. A total of 6 plant designs were analyzed, as follows: Plant Designation Receiver Fluid Thermal Storage Rankine Cycle Subcritical nitrate salt Nitrate salt Two tank nitrate salt Subcritical Supercritical nitrate salt Nitrate salt Two tank nitrate salt Supercritical Low temperature H2O Supercritical H2O Two tank nitrate salt Supercritical High temperature H2O Supercritical H2O Packed bed thermocline Supercritical Low temperature CO2 Supercritical CO2 Two tank nitrate salt Supercritical High temperature CO2 Supercritical CO2 Packed bed thermocline Supercritical Several conclusions have been drawn from the results of the study, as follows: 1) The use of supercritical H2O as the heat transport fluid in a packed bed thermocline is likely not a practical approach. The specific heat of the fluid is a strong function of the temperatures at values near 400 °C, and the temperature profile in the bed during a charging cycle is markedly different than the profile during a discharging cycle. 2) The use of supercritical CO2 as the heat transport fluid in a more » packed bed thermocline is judged to be technically feasible. Nonetheless, the high operating pressures for the supercritical fluid require the use of pressure vessels to contain the storage inventory. The unit cost of the two-tank nitrate salt system is approximately $24/kWht, while the unit cost of the high pressure thermocline system is nominally 10 times as high. 3) For the supercritical fluids, the outer crown temperatures of the receiver tubes are in the range of 700 to 800 °C. At temperatures of 700 °C and above, intermetallic compounds can precipitate between, and within, the grains of nickel alloys. The precipitation leads to an increase in tensile strength, and a decrease in ductility. Whether the proposed tube materials can provide the required low cycle fatigue life for the supercritical H2O and CO2 receivers is an open question. 4) A ranking of the plants, in descending order of technical and economic feasibility, is as follows: i) Supercritical nitrate salt and baseline nitrate salt: equal ratings ii) Low temperature supercritical H2O iii) Low temperature supercritical CO2 iv) High temperature supercritical CO2 v) High temperature supercritical H2O 5) The two-tank nitrate salt thermal storage systems are strongly preferred over the thermocline systems using supercritical heat transport fluids. « less
Authors:
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:981926
Report Number(s):DOE/GO18149
TRN: US201016%%2158
DOE Contract Number:FG36-08GO18149
Resource Type:Technical Report
Data Type:
Research Org:Abengoa Solar Inc.
Sponsoring Org:USDOE Office of Solar Energy Technology Program (EE-2A)
Country of Publication:United States
Language:English
Subject: 14 SOLAR ENERGY; CENTRAL RECEIVERS; CERAMICS; COOLANTS; DUCTILITY; ECONOMICS; ENERGY ACCOUNTING; HEAT STORAGE; INTERMETALLIC COMPOUNDS; NICKEL ALLOYS; NITRATES; PACKED BEDS; PRECIPITATION; PRESSURE VESSELS; RANKINE CYCLE; SPECIFIC HEAT; STORAGE; TENSILE PROPERTIES; TOWER FOCUS POWER PLANTS; TRANSPORT Central receivers, supercritical coolants, thermocline storage