Under contract from the Department of Energy, Rocketdyne is developing the technology of coal-fired gas heaters for utilization in Brayton-cycle cogeneration systems. The program encompasses both atmospheric fluidized bed and pulverized coal combustion systems; and it is directed toward the development of gas heater systems capable of delivering high pressure air or helium at 1550 F, when employing metallic heat exchangers, and 1750 F, when employing ceramic heat exchangers. This paper reports on the development status of the program, with discussions of the completed “screening” corrosion/erosion tests of candidate heat exchanger materials, a description and summary of the operating experience with the 6- by 6-foot AFB test facility and a projection of the potential for relatively near term commercialization of such heater systems.

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