A new WTE (Waste-to-Energy) power plant configuration combining municipal solid waste and gas turbines or landfill gas engines is proposed. The system has two objectives: increase the thermodynamic efficiency of the plant and avoid the corrosion in the MSW (Municipal Solid Waste) boiler caused by high tube metal temperatures. The difference between this concept and other existing configurations, such as the Zabalgarbi plant in Bilbao, Spain, is lower natural gas consumption, allowing an 80% waste contribution to the net energy exported or more. This high efficiency is achieved through four main steps: 1. introducing condensing heat exchangers to capture low temperature heat from the boiler flue gases; the stack temperature can drop to 70°C; 2. high steam temperatures in external superheaters using hot clean gases heated with duct burners; 3. mixing the exhaust gases of a small gas turbine with hot air preheated in a specially designed heat exchangers. The resulting temperature of this gas mixture is almost the same as a standard gas turbine but with the flow similar to that of a large machine with a higher O2 content; 4. After the duct burner and heat exchangers, the oxygen content of the clean gas mixture is still high, nearly 18%, and the temperature is approximately 200°C. The gas is then used as combustion air to the MSW boiler such that all the energy stays in the system. The efficiency can be as high as 33% for the MSW part of the plant and 49% for the natural gas system. Since the natural gas consumption is almost ten times less than the existing designs, it can be replaced by landfill gas or gasified ethanol or biodiesel. Currently an 850 ton/day plant is being designed in Brazil in partnership with a large power company. Other advantages include, self generation of internal power and lower steam superheating temperatures in the MSW boiler. This concept can be used with any grate design.
- Solid Waste Processing Division and Environmental Engineering Division
High Efficiency Waste to Energy Power Plants Combining Municipal Solid Waste and Natural Gas or Ethanol
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Guerreiro Ribeiro, S, & Kimberlin, T. "High Efficiency Waste to Energy Power Plants Combining Municipal Solid Waste and Natural Gas or Ethanol." Proceedings of the 18th Annual North American Waste-to-Energy Conference. 18th Annual North American Waste-to-Energy Conference. Orlando, Florida, USA. May 11–13, 2010. pp. 69-75. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/NAWTEC18-3567
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