Low Temperature Waste Heat to Power Generation
In the UK it is estimated that 70% of final energy usage in the industrial sector is for thermal processes (furnaces,reactors, boilers and dryers) and up to a third of this energy is wasted through losses. A significant portion of this heat can be recovered and utilised to make a contribution to energy efficiency and Greenhouse Gas Emission reduction targets. The vast majority of this energy, is available at low temperatures, below, 90 C, which makes it difficult to use directly within the plant or converted economically to electrical power using currently available technologies. The aim of this project is to fill a gap in the market and develop an innovative heat to power conversion system capable of recovering and converting low temperature waste heat to electrical power at competitive efficiency and higher thermal to electrical energy conversion ratio than currently available technologies. The innovation potential and impact of the system are significant. Project innovations will involve the optimisation of ‘wet’ expanders to operate efficiently at low heat source temperatures, development of thermally driven pumping system and innovative heat exchangers to reduce parasitic losses.