Dimensionless correlations and performance maps of scroll expanders for micro-scale Organic Rankine Cycles

In the endeavor towards distributed power systems, not seasonal-dependent micro-power generation technologies are expected to integrate the energy scenario in the years to come. In this context, the Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC) in the (1e10) KWe scale has chronically lacked a suitable expansion device, hindering its market attractiveness. As scroll expanders have been pointed out as strong potential candidates, performance correlations and pre-design maps based on a review and analysis of published experimental data are presented. A dimensionless approach based on the traditional Ns, Ds dimen-sionless numbers stemming from turbomachinery has been chosen for greater generality. In addition, the lubricating oil mass fraction effect on the scroll expander performance has been included. The generated maps contribute to accelerating the pre-design phases at the system and component level with beneficial effects for the overall development process. Basic geometry and size characteristics are considered as well, acknowledging their importance in micro-power embedded applications; these considerations are illustrated in a passenger car waste-heat recovery case study. Findings suggest that optimized scroll expanders may potentially reach very interesting nominal electric isentropic efficiencies (up to 80% for an oil lubricated scroll expander).

Published in:
Energy, 156, 520-533
May 06 2018

 Record created 2018-05-28, last modified 2018-05-28

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