Keywords: gas turbine engines, thermoacoustics, exergy efficiency, power gain, thermodynamics, gas turbines, thermoacoustic heat pumps, thermoacoustic refrigeration, waste heat, energy efficiency
Thermodynamic analysis of a hybrid gas turbine/thermoacoustic heat pump/refrigeration engine
Possible performance enhancement of small gas turbine power plants through the application of thermoacoustic systems is examined. The thermoacoustic subsystem is powered only by the waste heat of the gas turbine. Two different gas turbine configurations are considered: a Thermoacoustic refrigerator assisted gas turbine (TRG) and a Combined thermoacoustic heat pump and refrigeration assisted gas turbine (CTHRG). Exergy, rational efficiency and relative power gain (RPG) of these configurations are compared with those from the recuperated gas turbine engine. The results indicate that the integration of thermoacoustic system to a simple gas turbine cycle will not only enhance the energy/exergy efficiency for the overall plant but also increase the output power of the cycle. A cycle improvement, and hence the proper selection of the thermoacoustic configuration, depends on the application requirements of the gas turbine engine.