Energy Conversion and Management, Vol.125, 353-367, 2016
Analysis of two heat storage integrations for an Organic Rankine Cycle Parabolic trough solar power plant
Among the concentrated solar power technologies, those based on Organic Rankine Cycles have a very low market presence. However they have favorable characteristics for applications with low temperature and small/medium size (<10 MW), such as off-grid applications or distributed power generation. In this paper is analyzed a 5 MW parabolic trough plant integrated with an Organic Rankine cycle power block and thermal storage. On this purpose, two different thermal storage integrations are analyzed. They are based on two different heat storage layouts: direct system using Hitec XL both as Heat Transfer Fluid and as storage medium; indirect system using Therminol VP-1 as Heat Transfer Fluid and Hitec XL as storage medium. Full system performance at rated and off-design conditions is presented operating with different organic working fluids. Its potential application and main challenges for its development are discussed in terms of performance and costs. Among the analyzed working fluids, the best results were obtained for the cycle working with Toluene with an efficiency at the power block of 31.5% and an estimated power block cost of 825 (sic)/kW. The indirect storage layout was the most interesting from the point of view of Levelized Electricity Cost (16.19 c(sic)/kW) and productivity (28.2 GW 11/y for a 5 MWel plant) for 10 h of storage However, it results in a storage tanks volume 26% greater than the obtained for the equivalent direct storage layout. The results show the competitiveness and the potential of the proposed integrated small size parabolic trough designs for isolated applications as mines or for some distributed generation uses where grid capacity is limited. (C) 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Keywords:Solar energy;Thermal energy storage;Parabolic trough technology;Organic;Rankine cycle;ORC;CSP