New design concepts for natural draft dry cooling towers

Gurgenci, Hal and Guan, Zhiqiang (2010). New design concepts for natural draft dry cooling towers. In: Hal Gurgenci and Rikki Weber, Proceedings of the 2010 Australian Geothermal Energy Conference. Australian Geothermal Energy Conference 2010, Adelaide, Australia, (290-293). 16-19 November 2010.

Author Gurgenci, Hal
Guan, Zhiqiang
Title of paper New design concepts for natural draft dry cooling towers
Conference name Australian Geothermal Energy Conference 2010
Conference location Adelaide, Australia
Conference dates 16-19 November 2010
Proceedings title Proceedings of the 2010 Australian Geothermal Energy Conference
Place of Publication Canberra, Australia
Publisher Geoscience Australia
Publication Year 2010
Sub-type Fully published paper
Open Access Status
ISBN 9781921781384
ISSN 1448-2177
Editor Hal Gurgenci
Rikki Weber
Start page 290
End page 293
Total pages 4
Language eng
Abstract/Summary Design of efficient natural draft dry cooling system is essential for Australian geothermal power plant applications. In fact, dry cooling may be the only option for most geothermal power plants planned to be established in Australia since these areas have limited access to water resource. Natural draft cooling towers in coal-fired and nuclear power plants have been mainly of concrete construction. It has been reported that the highest concrete cooling tower in the world of 200 meters high has been built at the RWE power station at Niederaussem (Busch et al, 2002). Due to the lower thermal efficiencies of geothermal power plants, the heat rejection per kWh(e) of net generation from these plants will be four or more times as great as from fossil fuelled plants (Kröger 2004), which will require a much larger cooling tower for a geothermal power plant of compared to a coal-fired power plant of similar capacity. The design and construction of such a large concrete cooling tower is extremely expensive and takes a long time to build. The tower structure is heavy and requires substantial foundation. The Queensland Geothermal Energy Centre of Excellence (QGECE) is to explore new concepts for natural draft dry cooling technologies for geothermal power plants. The aims for the new design concepts are to increase the performance of the cooling tower and reduce the overall cost. Two alternative designs are proposed: low cost air-lift mobile cooling tower (Gurgenci and Guan, 2009) and solar cooling tower. The design concept for air-lift mobile cooling tower is as follow: the tower is built as a flexible shroud and is held in place in tension by the buoyancy force provided by a lighter-than-air gas. One benefit for the air-lift cooling tower is that the industry can construct very tall cooling towers at an acceptable cost. Other benefits include constructing such towers with a minimum of time and expense, which are of relatively light weight and which are not subject to frequent repairs. The towers are mobile and can be disassembled and moved to a new geothermal plant site with a minimum of time and effort. The design concept for solar cooling tower includes a solar energy system which is used to preheat the air inside the cooling tower to increase the buoyancy of the natural draft cooling tower. The enhanced buoyancy enable the cooling tower be constructed with either reduced size or with increased tower performance, which is especially beneficial during hottest time period in a day.
Keyword Geothermal energy
Cooling tower and heat exchanger
Natural draft cooling technologies
Q-Index Code E1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

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Created: Wed, 12 Oct 2011, 16:11:33 EST by Zhiqiang Guan on behalf of School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering