Innovative model of trigeneration system generating desalinated water, hot and cold by using low grade heat recovery from nuclear reactor set in cascade of sorption devices

Ryszard Zwierzchowski, Marcin Malicki, Maciej Lipka

The paper introduces an innovative conceptual model of a trigeneration system based on implementation of sorption devices in cascade configuration: absorption heat pumps and adsorption chillers connected with thermal energy storage, for recovering useless heat from secondary cooling circuit of a research nuclear reactor. Proposed trigeneration source provides building with useful heat for the purposes of heating system with thermal energy storage and cold for air-conditioning purposes. Also, desalinated water covering technological demand is produced. Useful heat is produced by an absorption heat pump, cold and desalinated water by adsorption chiller/desalinator. For the described trigeneration system calculations based on commercially available equipment (lithium-bromate absorption heat pumps and silica-gel adsorption chillers with desalination option) and required heat/cold/desalinate demand have been carried out. Operational data collected from an existing installation extended by introducing thermal energy storage to the system was used to simulate the heat demand during the year. 5-year operational data from the “MARIA” research nuclear reactor located at the National Center for Nuclear Research in Świerk, Poland was used to simulate low source variations for the absorption heat pump operation. The results of model implementation demonstrate a series of promising effects on many levels of system operation, including production of desalinated water on a large scale and significant reduction of: (I) energy usage (by 40% when considering only heating scenario), (II) nuclear fuel consumption, (III) heat delivery losses.

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