The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) has selected six Phase II projects to receive funding toward the development of new technologies for advanced gas turbine components. The funding seeks to improve efficiency ratings of combined-cycle natural gas-fired power plants from 61 percent to 65 percent.
Emerging innovations seek to utilize carbon dioxide in a supercritical state (sCO2) as an alternative to the steam currently used as the working fluid in power cycles. This would allow for higher outputs in smaller packages, thanks to the thermophysical properties of sCO2. It might also reduce the cost of electricity.
The six projects selected for funding are:
- Rotating Detonation Combustion for Gas Turbines—Aerojet Rocketdyne, in partnership with the Southwest Research Institute, Purdue University, the University of Alabama, the University of Michigan, the University of Central Florida, and Duke Energy.
- Low-Leakage Seals for Utility-Scale sCO2 Turbines—GE Global Research, in partnership with Southwest Research Institute.
- Cooled High-Temperature Ceramic Matrix Composite Nozzles for Gas Turbines for 65 Percent Efficiency—GE Power, working with GE Global Research and Clemson University.
- Advanced Multi-Tube Mixer Combustion for 65 Percent Efficiency—GE Power, in partnership with GE Global Research.
- Ceramic Matrix Composite Advanced Transition for 65 Percent Combined-Cycle Efficiency—Siemens Energy Inc., in partnership with COI Ceramics and Florida Turbine Technologies.
- High-Inlet Temperature Combustor for Direct-Fired Supercritical Oxy-combustion—Southwest Research Institute, in partnership with Thar Energy LLC, GE Global Research, Georgia Tech, and the University of Central Florida.
The Phase II projects will receive a total of approximately $30 million of research funding from the DOE over the next 3.5 years.