Full and part load exergetic analysis of a hybrid micro gas turbine fuel cell system based on existing components
The paper deals with the examination of a hybrid system consisting of a pre-commercially available high temperature solid oxide fuel cell and an existing recuperated microturbine. The irreversibilities and thermodynamic inefficiencies of the system are evaluated after examining the full and partial load exergetic performance and estimating the amount of exergy destruction and the efficiency of each hybrid system component. At full load operation the system achieves an exergetic efficiency of 59.8%, which increases during the partial load operation, as a variable speed control method is utilized. Furthermore, the effects of the various performance parameters such as fuel cell stack temperature and fuel utilization factor are assessed. The results showed that the components in which chemical reactions occur have the higher exergy destruction rates. The exergetic performance of the system is affected significantly by the stack temperature. Based on the exergetic analysis, suggestions are given for reducing the overall system irreversibility. Finally, the environmental impact of the operation of the hybrid system is evaluated and compared with a similarly rated conventional gas turbine plant. From the comparison it is apparent that the hybrid system obtains nearly double exergetic efficiency and about half the amount of greenhouse gas emissions compared with the conventional plant. (C) 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.