Cooling systems for power plants in an energy-water nexus era

Kaufui Wong, James Johnston

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Potable water is becoming scarce in many areas of the planet as the human population pushes past 7 billion. There is an increasing need for electric power since electricity is essential for modern development and progress. Traditionally, condenser cooling systems for power plants use seawater or freshwater in conjunction with cooling tower technology. Seawater is used in plants near the sea or ocean, and seawater condenser cooling systems are typically open systems. More recently, air-cooling has been implemented and undergoing evaluations. Predictably, during the summer season in hot, semi-desert and desert areas, air-cooling would not prove very efficient. Ironically, these areas would require the most fresh, potable water if the population and/or population density is large. The need for additional power generation units to satisfy consumer demands, and hence more cooling capacities, creates a problem for utilities. The current work researches the feasibility of using seawater cooling systems in the USA that are far from the sea. Five such locations have been identified as possibilities. Such a system has proven successful in South Florida. This system utilizes a series of cooling canals, used to dissipate the condenser heat to the surroundings. Relevant statistics of such a canal include water flow rate, total capacity, and MW of generators (both fossil-fueled and nuclear steam generators) the system is designed to cool. Additional statistics include the possible need to top-up (both amount and frequency of water required to maintain canal surface levels) or whether local natural rain water is adequate to replace evaporation and loss. Logistical information includes the estimated size of land required to accommodate the cooling canals. In estimating the canal system size and concomitantly the land required in other parts of the country, there is the tacit assumption that the thermal capacity of the surrounding land is about the same, and that the thermal conductivities of the different types of soil, and the heat transfer coefficients between the seawater and the canal are similar.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, Proceedings (IMECE)
PublisherAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME)
Volume6 B
ISBN (Print)9780791856291
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2013
EventASME 2013 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, IMECE 2013 - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: Nov 15 2013Nov 21 2013

Other

OtherASME 2013 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, IMECE 2013
CountryUnited States
CitySan Diego, CA
Period11/15/1311/21/13

Fingerprint

Canals
Cooling systems
Power plants
Seawater
Cooling
Water
Potable water
Statistics
Cooling towers
Open systems
Steam generators
Planets
Air
Heat transfer coefficients
Specific heat
Power generation
Rain
Thermal conductivity
Evaporation
Electricity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering

Cite this

Wong, K., & Johnston, J. (2013). Cooling systems for power plants in an energy-water nexus era. In ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, Proceedings (IMECE) (Vol. 6 B). American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). https://doi.org/10.1115/IMECE2013-64920

Cooling systems for power plants in an energy-water nexus era. / Wong, Kaufui; Johnston, James.

ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, Proceedings (IMECE). Vol. 6 B American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), 2013.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Wong, K & Johnston, J 2013, Cooling systems for power plants in an energy-water nexus era. in ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, Proceedings (IMECE). vol. 6 B, American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), ASME 2013 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, IMECE 2013, San Diego, CA, United States, 11/15/13. https://doi.org/10.1115/IMECE2013-64920
Wong K, Johnston J. Cooling systems for power plants in an energy-water nexus era. In ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, Proceedings (IMECE). Vol. 6 B. American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). 2013 https://doi.org/10.1115/IMECE2013-64920
Wong, Kaufui ; Johnston, James. / Cooling systems for power plants in an energy-water nexus era. ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, Proceedings (IMECE). Vol. 6 B American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), 2013.
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