The evaporative inlet cooling systems used for inlet cooling of gas turbines during hot summers do not work well in humid areas. However, desiccant wheels can be used to dehumidify the air before passing it trough the evaporative cooler. Since the desiccant wheels work adiabatically, the resulting air is hotter than the air introduced to the wheel and an evaporative cooling system is used to cool down the dehumidified air. Combined direct and indirect evaporative coolers have been already used to investigate the effects of dehumidification on the effectiveness of the evaporation cooling systems. It is shown that a single desiccant wheel does not offer much higher effectiveness compared to the multiple-stage evaporative systems. In this paper, an improved version of the desiccant inlet cooling system is presented. Additional dehumidification and indirect evaporative cooling stages are added to increase the effectiveness of the inlet cooling. A typical gas turbine cycle along with an industrial gas turbine with actual performance curves are used to simulate the thermal cycle in presence of the different inlet cooling systems. The simulations are carried out for three different climatic conditions. The improved and original desiccant-based systems are compared and it is shown that the added stages substantially improve the effectiveness of the desiccant-based inlet cooling.

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