This paper illustrates the optimization procedure for heat exchangers residing in complex power plants. A specific case of optimizing a new technology ceramic heat exchanger, which is a part of the complex power plant, is shown. The heat exchanger design methods presented are based on two different objective functions, namely, a modified irreversibility rate based objective function proposed by the authors in earlier work and an objective function based on thermoeconomics. This paper also extends existing work by illustrating a method to obtain the cost coefficients for thermoeconomic optimization, based on the use of an overall plant simulation model. A discussion on possible methods of improving the design guideposts obtained from irreversibility minimization analysis is also presented.

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