Energy, Vol.163, 1077-1092, 2018
Numerical investigation into the effect of compressor and expander valve timings on the performance of an Ericsson engine equipped with a gas-to-gas heat exchanger
The present investigation is a continuation of a previous study conducted by the authors that presented a dynamic-simulation model of an Ericsson engine equipped with a gas-to-gas heat exchanger. This model is here used to investigate the effect of compressor and expander valve timing variation. The investigation begins with an un-optimized case and examines various improvements in terms of valve timings. This results to an optimized case that improves power and thermal efficiency. The optimized case serves as reference to study the effects of variations in the valve timings of the compressor and expander. The inlet valve closing timing of the expander (IVCe), which determines the intake duration of the expander, necessitates the readjustment of some of the other valve timings, since it significantly affects the pressure levels in all devices. The IVCe variation led to the potential of using a single heater with multiple compressor-expander pairs that are sequentially and periodically coupled to the heater. This increases the specific power output compared to using several compressor-heater-expander triplets, since it reduces the total volume of the engine. The number of compressor-expander pairs that can be coupled to a single heater is largely determined by the IVCe timing. (C) 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.