International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, Vol.45, No.29, 14614-14624, 2020
Estimating the system efficiency of the multifunctional hydrogen complex at nuclear power plants
The paper deals with the primary current frequency regulation in the energy system (ES) as well as the basic requirements for NPP power units (PUs) under the conditions of involvement into the primary regulation. According to these requirements, NPP operation is related to the unloading and corresponding decrease in efficiency. It has been shown in this connection that combining NPP with a hydrogen complex (HEC) allows excluding the inefficient unloading mode. This enables the steam turbine and reactor equipment to operate in the basic mode at nominal power level. Besides, the conditions for producing and storing hydrogen and oxygen during the day as well as additionally during the night-time of off-peak electrical load may be created, which allows using them for generating peak power. In the paper, the systemic economic benefit as a result of involving NPP combined with HEC into primary regulation of the current frequency in ES with allowance for expending resources for the main equipment has been estimated. In this regard, the paper gives grounds for cyclic loadings of HEC main equipment including metal tanks for storing hydrogen and oxygen, compressors, hydrogen-oxygen combustion chamber (HOCC) for hydrogen-steam superheating of the actuating medium in the NPP steam turbine cycle. Methodological grounds for evaluating the equipment endurance under cyclic loading with involving into the primary frequency regulation by the criterion of the fatigue crack growth rate are described. It has been shown that in terms of HEC equipment, the highest load intensity occurs in HOCC due to high thermal stresses. Also, the systemic economic benefit has been estimated, and the impact of the equipment deterioration under conditions of cyclic loading has been demonstrated. It is shown that when combining NPP PUs with HEC, the efficiency of primary regulation may significantly depend on such factors as the cost of equipment exposed to cyclic loads, the frequency and intensity of cyclic loads, and the relation between the peak electricity tariff and the cost price of electric energy produced by NPP. It has been shown on the basis of novel methods for estimating the efficiency of involving NPP with HEC into the primary frequency regulation with allowance for damage to the equipment, that the use of HEC may provide a considerable economic benefit, as compared to the version of NPP unloading when involving directly into frequency regulation. (C) 2020 Hydrogen Energy Publications LLC. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.