This paper firstly expounds that the reheat-regenerative Rankine power cycle is a suitable cycle for the parabolic trough collector, a popular kind of collector in the power industry. In a thermal power cycle, the higher the temperature at which heat is supplied, the higher the efficiency of the cycle. On the other hand, for a given kind of collector at the same exiting temperature, the higher the temperature of the fluid entering the collector, the lower the efficiency of the collector. With the same exiting temperature of the solar field and the same temperature differences at the hottest end of the superheater/reheater and at the pinch points in the heat exchangers (e.g., the boiler) in the cycle, the efficiencies of the system are subject to the temperature of the fluid entering the collector or the saturation temperature at the boiler. This paper also investigates the optimal thermal and exergetic efficiencies for the combined system of the power cycle and collector. To make most advantage of the collector, the exiting fluid is supposed to be at the maximum temperature the collector can harvest. Hence, the thermal and exergetic efficiencies of the system are related to the saturation temperature at the boiler here.
Field of Research
091399 Mechanical Engineering not elsewhere classified