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# How to calculate overall thermal efficiency of combined cycle power plants – a sample CCGT presented Calculating or predicting the

overall performance of a combined cycle power plant, specifically a combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) power plant is sometimes difficult for most design engineers. Your favorite energy technology expert again comes to the rescue – Engineer Marcial T. Ocampo – has derived the following equation to guide the design engineer and project finance modeler or business development engineer in predicting the overall thermal efficiency of the combined cycle. Here’s the step by step derivation: Let Total Energy Input = Total Energy Output = 100%. Then let’s assume that the proportion of the energy input going to the gas turbine (GT) and to the waste heat recovery steam generator (SG) is around: GT = 1/3 = 33.33% SG = 1 – 1/3 = 2/3 = 66.67% The energy input to the steam generator is then split into 85% (up to 90%) being recovered as steam energy in the boiler while the balance of 15% (or 10%) is lost to the atmosphere (smoke stack, radiation and convection loss). The steam energy is then captured in the steam turbine with an efficiency of 37% and the balance (63%) is lost to the cooling water in the condenser. The mechanical energy captured in the GT and ST shafts are then coupled in a clutch (100% efficiency) to drive finally the electric generator (EG) with mechanical to electrical conversion efficiency of 98% (balance of 2% lost to heating in the generator windings and generator cooling system). The final formula is thus: (with correction for GT efficiency per suggestion of George – see his comments) OE = (GT x GTE + SG x BE x STE) x ME x GE where OE = overall energy efficiency, % of fuel energy input (as GHV or LHV) GT = 1/3 = 33.33% (assumption) GTE = gas turbine efficiency = say 90% – 95% (the reader please comment or advice)

= function of heat loss from GT due to conduction, convection and radiation from GT casing, any heat loss due to friction resulting in higher GT exhaust is captured, however, by the heat recovery steam generator

SG = 1 – GT = 1 – 1/3 = 2/3 = 66.67% (balance)

windage losses (air drag). cooling system.67% x 90% x 37%) x 100% x 98% = 53.33 x 98% + 66. windage losses (air drag) GE = electric generator efficiency = 98% = function of generator design. mechanical design. the resulting overall efficiency of the combined cycle power plant is raised to: OE = (33. around 56%. The only way to go higher than this is to improve further the gas turbine efficiency beyond 98%.77% Further raising the steam turbine efficiency to 40% will result in a much higher efficiency of: OE = (33. bearing lubrication Putting all together now. bearing lubrication. condenser vacuum pressure. the resulting overall efficiency would be raised to OE = (33. excess air) STE = steam turbine efficiency = 37% (up to 40%) = function of steam inlet temperature.56% For instance. if we raise the gas turbine efficiency from 95% to 98%. clutch system. boiler efficiency beyond 90%. The author has developed an state of the art project finance model for a 25-year economic life CCGT and may be requested thru this link: .BE = waste heat recovery boiler efficiency = 85% (up to 90%) = function of exit flue gas temperature (energy lost).33 x 98% + 66.58% For instance. gas turbine exhaust temperature (energy input).53% I guess this provides an upper limit of what a CCGT could deliver. steam exhaust pressure. boiler design. steam turbine design. steam quality ME = mechanical drive shaft and clutch efficiency = 100% = function of drive shaft design. voltage. air). if we raise the boiler efficiency from 85% to 90%. flue gas composition (fuel. raising the steam turbine efficiency beyond 40% and optimizing the proportion of energy output thru the gas turbine (currently 1/3) and the steam generator (balance of 2/3).33 x 98% + 66. type of gas cooling (hydrogen.67% x 85% x 37%) x 100% x 98% = 52. the predicted overall thermal efficiency of the combined cycle power plant is: OE = (33.33 x 95% + 66.67% X 90% X 40%) X 100% X 98% = 55.67% x 85% x 37%) x 100% x 98% = 51.

regulatory costs. the model will go over each pair of sensitivity (machine and plant location/type of cooling) and calculate the fuel cost needed to meet 15% equity IRR. tariff and fuel cost to meet the 15% equity IRR hurdle rate for making equity investments. bunker oil) are fixed. By using case switches. Other variations of the model objective include determining the maximum capital cost given the O&M cost. DCF IRR for equity investment.a. September 6th. ROW and land lease. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2. property insurance. 2) Alternatively. It uses goal seek to set the equity cash flow NPV to zero for each of sensitivity pair. energy audits. The model is currently capable of analyzing several CCGT machines / models from various manufacturers for a number of plant locations with specific type of cooling system (sea water once thru. if the capital cost. the model will calculate the net present value and project IRR (return of investment or ROI from the project cash flow). power generation technology This entry was posted on Sunday. You can leave a response. business interruption insurance.http://energytechnologyexpert. electricity tariff and fuel cost (natural gas. taxes and duties. etc) and electricity tariff (industries. gas oil. property taxes.) Tags: combined cycle gas turbine. or trackback from your own site. You may order my power generation technology articles and project finance models thru the ENERGY DATA page. river water or deep well cooling tower. 2009 at 12:13 am and is filed under combined cycle gas turbine. energy efficiency. Ocampo are copyrighted and may not be redistributed in any way or form. O&M costs (variable and fixed O&M. NPV and equity IRR (return on equity or ROE from the equity cash flow) or the more stringent financial analysis tool of bankers today –> the NPV and dividends IRR (return on dividends from dividends cash flow). distribution utilities. project development. energy conservation. recurring regulatory costs. Marcial T.com/technology-data-resource/large-scale-project-financemodels/ The model has the following capability: 1) Given the all-in capital cost (EPC. Thanks! Marcial T. I would like to invite you and your company to continue supporting this blog thru the DONATE button. 10 Responses to “How to calculate overall thermal efficiency of combined cycle power plants – a sample CCGT presented” . interest during construction). and dry cooling with radiator). power generation technologies. installation and erection. lake water once thru. O&M costs. power generation. working capital. national grid. wholesale electricity spot market) ==> it determines the maximum price of the natural gas fuel needed to meet the 15% p. energy efficiency. Ocampo (Friendly note: All content written by Engr.0 feed.

could comment on this. I made allowance for inefficiency in the heat recovery steam boiler (85-90%) of the 2/3 heat input while the 1/3 to the gas turbine was only corrected together with the the shaft work for the clutch efficiency (assumed 100%) and generator efficiency (98%). 2009 at 5:57 am It seems as though you also need to account for the efficiency of the gas turbine. GE. admin Says: September 23rd. 2009 at 8:33 pm Hi George. Thus the only significant heat loss at the GT would be due to conduction to surrounding GT supports. be captured by the heat recovery steam boiler. I stand corrected! Cheers. Alstom.1. George Says: September 23rd. 2. convection to surrounding cold air and radiation to the cold sky which could be minimized by installing sufficient insulation and light colored aluminum covering to minimize all these three losses. You’re absolutely right. Westinghouse. Perhaps you may suggest a gas turbine efficiency level in the order of over 95-98%? I guess our guys from Siemens. Marcial . The same was not done for the boiler or steam turbine…the efficiency of each of these two items is included in the calculation. The calculation above does not discount the 1/3 of the energy that goes to the gas turbine…it appears to assume that all of that energy is transferred to the gas turbine shaft. Thank you so much for your clarification. etc. however. Any heat loss at the GT due to friction resulting in higher GT exhaust temperature will.

My simplified method for calculating the overall efficiency of a combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) is indeed an approximation: OE = (GT x GTE + ST x BLE x STE) x ME x GE .3. Efficiency———————=input. Don Johnson Says: September 26th.It should be measurable and should calkculated on the basis of input energy and recovered energy in the process. 2009 at 12:41 pm Thanks Don. admin Says: September 27th.losses — do—in percentage———= Output(KWX860Kcals) X 100 —————— (input(fuel Wt X kcals) The input should be considered as weight x cal val of fuel fired & out put wil be kwx860(net power out put) 4. 2009 at 2:10 pm Attn Admin. the efficiency calculatoions based on assemptions cannot lead us to reality.

kW Total Losses = Surface Losses + Friction Losses + Sensible Heat Losses + Latent Heat Losses + Cooling Water Losses Surface Losses = conduction + convection + radiation Friction Losses = bearings + shafts + clutch losses + windage losses Sensible Heat Losses = flue gas flowrate x specific heat of flue gas x (Tfg – 25) flue gas flow rate = CO2 + H2O + SO2 + NO2 + CO + O2 + N2 + moisture + ash. a more detailed and rigorous determination of overall efficiency will partake of the form: Total Input = Total Output where total energy input = Mf x GHVf + enthalpy of all incoming streams relative to 25 deg Celsius (air. kg/s CPw = specific heat of water. fuel. fuel. kJ/(kg – deg Celsius) Ts = inlet temperature of any stream (fuel. kJ/s = mass (moisture in fuel + moisture in combustion air + water from combustion of hydrogen) x latent heat of evaporation of water mass = kg/s Latent heat = kJ/kg Cooling Water Losses = Mw x CPw x (Tw – 25) Mw = cooling water flow rate. deg Celsius Latent Heat Losses = heat of evaporation of moisture and water formed from combustion of hydrogen. kW total energy output = Pgross + Total Losses Pgross = gross power output of the generator. kJ/(kg – deg Celsius) Tw = exit temperature of cooling water . water) + Pinput Mf = mass flow rate of fuel. kJ / (kg – deg Celsius) Tfg = flue gas exit temperature. kJ/kg enthalpy of any stream = Ms x CPs x (Ts – 25) Ms = mass flow rate of any stream (air. water) CPs = specific heat of any stream.where OE = overall efficiency GT = fraction of energy output to GT GTE = gas turbine efficiency (to account for heat losses from GT engine) ST= 1 – GT = fraction of energy output to ST BLE = heat recovery steam generator (boiler) efficiency (to account for heat losses from boiler) STE = steam turbine efficiency (to account for heat loss from steam turbine) ME = mechanical efficiency (to account for shaft work losses) GE = generator efficiency (to account for generator losses) Alternatively. kg/s GHVf = gross heating value of fuel. kg/s specific heat of flue gas component. air. cooling water). deg Celsius Pinput = power input (parasitic load).

Alternatively. the losses are adjusted as follows: Total Losses (net) = Total Input – (Pgross – Pinput) The percentage total losses (net) is thus % Total Losses (net) = (Total Losses (net) / Total Input) x 100% The overall net energy efficiency is therefore % overall net energy efficiency = 100% – % Total Losses (net) I hope Don this clarification will also help our readers. hence. we get the losses by difference (heat loss method): Total Losses = Total Input – Pgross = total energy input – gross electrical output at generator terminals The percentage total losses is thus % Total Losses = (Total Losses / Total Input) x 100% The overall gross energy efficiency is therefore % overall gross energy efficiency = 100% – % Total Losses The above derivation is based on the gross heating value (gross calorific value) of the fuel with water in the flue gas in liquid form. There would be no need. In this case. however. the need for the latent heat of evaporation correction. Lastly. The overall efficiency is called overall gross efficiency (based on GHV or GCV of fuel). if the lower heating value (net calorific value) of the fuel is used.Simplifying. for the latent heat of evaporation correction. the power is expressed as net exportable power (Pgross – Pinput). the overall efficiency is called overall net efficiency (based on LHV or NCV of fuel). Hence. Cheers and Thanks for bringing this out. Marcial . then water would be in vapor form in the flue gas.

] http://energytechnologyexpert. 2009 at 11:02 am Considering that much of the energy input into a gas turbine must be consumed by the compressor portion of the gas turbine..] ...com/power-generation/fossil-fuels-and-energy/gasturbines/combined-cyc. [. 2009 at 6:58 am [. Best regards... The waste heat from the gas turbine exhaust is a souce of energy for the overall plant process. but it does not conteibute to the shaft output power of the gas turbine per se. overall gas turbine efficiencies are much lower than 90%…please see info below regards expected gas turbine efficiency: The Frame 5-2E is the newest member of GE’s Frame 5 gas turbine fleet. George 6. which has compiled more than 16 million hours of service worldwide.5. George Says: October 8th.. The two-shaft machine combines the latest heavy duty gas turbine technology with proven design concepts to achieve 36% efficiency in mechanical drive operation and 35% in generator drive operation. THE CASE AGAINST OIL DEREGULATION – Marcial Ocampo’s comment #1 | Intelligent Utility Says: December 27th.

2010 at 9:02 am Hi George. but still verifies that your assumptions do not deviate much on actual values. Wow. I have gone the long method done. I have been analyzing our GT setup here. Cheers! 8. admin Says: June 4th. Marcial 9. etc. My method will actually allow you to estimate the ultimate efficiency of each technology given the limitations of each component efficiencies. 2010 at 11:25 am .7.losses. could not disagree more. But in my calculation done. Mon Says: June 7th. Having difficulties also w/ the efficiencies. Mon Says: June 4th. Cheers. 2010 at 9:17 pm Hi George! Thanks again for your nice comment.

Ours is a MF111B GT. And how about convetive/ radiation losses to the atmosphere. When the generators become older and older. how much do those factors contribute? Thanks. Mon 10. What is the efficiency cost that results im increasing marginal cost of running the each system. Do you have any idea about it or any literature u have got? Thanx for the information you are sharing with us. Your comments please.Hi Marcial/George. 2010 at 8:49 am Hi. SSALCI Says: July 25th. I find this site amazing. . Confirming around 36% for GT and 35% @ the generator. marginal runninng cost of that generator goes up that is given by %. I guess there is a % parameter that suggests this ratio. I am a bit unsure if 6% losses (not converted to heat energy to flue gas) due to mechnical inefficiencies of the GT is ok to assume.