High temperature gas-cooled reactor with direct helium turbine cycle is based on the closed Brayton cycle. Its outstanding feature is the high efficiency of power generation. Pervious researches showed that recuperator was the key component to promote the cycle’s efficiency. And pressure drops in components were unavoidable in actual projects and had significant influence on cycle efficiency. A dimensionless model was proposed to analyze cycle’s features of HTGR coupled with gas turbine. The parameters’ effect on cycle’s efficiency was analyzed, with full consideration of the frictional and local pressure drops respectively. Under the restriction of materials and state-of-art of technologies, it showed that the cycle’s efficiency depended on compression ratio, recuperator’s effectiveness and pressure drops of components. However the pressure drop ratios of different components were inherently connected due to the closed cycle. Furthermore pressure drops inside the recuperator were also the function of effectiveness of the heat transfer based on the Reynolds analogy. Therefore cycle’s efficiency just depended on recuperator’s effectiveness with fixed compression ratio. So there existed optimal recuperator’s effectiveness and maximum cycle’s efficiency, which varied with the pressure ratio and other parameters as temperature ratio. The calculation also indicated that the pressure drop in pipes was close to that in heat exchangers. That was, the local pressure drop and frictional pressure drop should be considered respectively, and the local pressure drop made quite large reduction of cycle’s efficiency. The result also showed that local pressure drop had great influence on parameters such as optimal compression ratio and recuperator’s effectiveness.

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