Sunday, September 25, 2005

What can be expected from combined-cycle power stations?

This article, by SEAL in partnership with Energie-Fakten gives an overview of the potential conversion efficiency that can be expected from combined-cycle (Steam & Gas) power stations.
If we consider the electricity production system of the future:
  • Renewable electricity, primarily wind and solar PV, with a primary energy equivalent of 1 kWh per kWhe generated - according to an IEA convention
  • Combined cycle power stations with 55-60% efficiency, i.e. up to 1.8 kWh primary energy per unit of generation
  • Coal-fired power stations with 40-45% efficiency, i.e. up to 2.5 kWh primary energy equivalent.
  • Nuclear power plants with 30% efficiency
A system based on the first 3 technologies with the most modern power stations would have an overall primary energy equivalent of 1.7, i.e. requiring 1.7 kWh of primary energy to produce a unit of electricity.
http://www.sealnet.org/s/10.pdf

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