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On-demand Sweating Boosted Air Cooled Heat-Pipe Condensers for Green Power Plants



To enable a green economy, U.S. federal government requires annual 2% reduction of water use for industrial, domestic, commercial, and agricultural applications , which imposes challenges to power industries that accounted for 41% of total freshwater withdrawals and consumed approximately 143,000 million gallons freshwater per day in 2005 . Air cooled condensers (ACC) can drastically reduce water use, but have up to 10% power production penalty. Additionally, air is a poor heat transfer fluid compared to water in water cooled condensers (WCC). As a result, large surface areas are required, for an example, condenser tubes have ~10 fins per inch with a more than 11 kilometers tube per MW of power generator output , which result in large footprint and costly ACC.

The most critical element in reducing the size and hence footprint and capital cost of ACC is to drastically enhance air cooling. However, for ACC applications, it is extremely challenging to triple or even double the state-of-the practice heat transfer coefficient (HTC, 20-50 W/m2∙K) of air cooling through augmenting heat transfer areas in a cost-effective way. Highly efficient phase change heat transfer holds premise to address this challenge. In this proposed program, sweating-boosted air cooling strategy is being developed to substantially enhance the HTC in the air side of ACC.



Experimental Determination and Modeling of Used Fuel Drying by Vacuum and Gas Circulation for Dry Cask Storage




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