Renewed interest in pressure gain combustion applied as a replacement of conventional combustors within gas turbine engines creates the potential for greatly increased capability engines in the marine power market segment. A limited analysis has been conducted to estimate the degree of improvements possible in engine thermal efficiency and specific work for a type of wave rotor device utilizing these principles. The analysis considers a realistic level of component losses. The features of this innovative technology are compared with those of more common incremental improvement types of technology for the purpose of assessing potentials for initial market entry within the marine gas turbine market. Both recuperation and non-recuperation cycles are analyzed. Specific fuel consumption improvements in excess of 35% over those of a Brayton cycle are indicated. The technology exhibits the greatest percentage potential in improving efficiency for engines utilizing relatively low or moderate mechanical compression pressure ratios. Specific work increases are indicated to be of an equally dramatic magnitude. The advantages of the pressure gain combustion approach are reviewed as well as its technology development status.

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