Analyses of Long Term Off-Design Performance Strategy and Operation of A High Pressure Ratio Intercooled Brayton Helium Gas Turbine Cycle for Generation IV Nuclear Power Plants

[+] Author and Article Information
Arnold Gad-Briggs

EGB Engineering, 28 Beaumont Avenue, Southwell. Nottinghamshire. NG25 0BB. U.K.; Gas Turbine Engineering Group, Cranfield University, Cranfield, Bedfordshire, MK43 0AL U.K.

Pericles Pilidis

Gas Turbine Engineering Group, Cranfield University, Cranfield, Bedfordshire, MK43 0AL U.K.

Theoklis Nikolaidis

Gas Turbine Engineering Group, Cranfield University, Cranfield, Bedfordshire, MK43 0AL U.K.

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4040371 History: Received October 29, 2017; Revised May 18, 2018


The Intercooled Cycle (IC) is a simplified novel proposal for Generation IV Nuclear Power Plants (NPP) based on studies demonstrating efficiencies of over 45%. As an alternative to the Simple Cycle Recuperated (SCR) and the Intercooled Cycle Recuperated (ICR), the main difference in configuration is no recuperator, which reduces its size. It is expected that the components of the IC will not operate at optimum part power due to seasonal changes in ambient temperature and grid prioritisation for renewable sources. Thus the ability to demonstrate viable part load performance becomes an important requirement. The main objective of this study is to derive Off-Design Points (ODPs) for a temperature range of -35 to 50°C and COTs between 750 to 1000°C. The ODPs have been calculated using a tool designed for this study. Based on results, the intercooler changes the mass flow rate and compressor pressure ratio. However, a drop of ~9% in plant efficiency, in comparison to the ICR (6%) was observed for pressure losses of up to 5% . The reactor pressure losses for IC has the lowest effect on plant cycle efficiency in comparison to the SCR and ICR. Characteristic maps are created to support first order calculations. It is also proposed to consider the intercooler pressure loss as a handle for ODP performance. The analyses brings attention to the IC an alternative cycle and aids development of cycles for Generation IV Nuclear Power Plants specifically Gas Cooled Fast Reactors (GFRs) and Very High Temperature Reactors (VHTRs)

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