Bottoming cycles are drawing a real interest in a world where resources are becoming scarcer and the environmental footprint of power plants is becoming more controlled. Reduction of flue gas temperature, power generation boost without burning more fuel and even production of heat for cogeneration applications are very attractive and it becomes necessary to quantify how much can really be extracted from a simple cycle to be converted to a combined configuration.

As supercritical CO2 is becoming an emerging working fluid [2, 3, 5, 7 and 8] due not only to the fact that turbomachines are being designed significantly more compact, but also because of the fluid’s high thermal efficiency in cycles, it raises an increased interest in its various applications. Evaluating the option of combined gas and supercritical CO2 cycles for different gas turbine sizes, gas turbine exhaust gas temperatures and configurations of bottoming cycle type becomes an essential step toward creating guidelines for the question, “how much more can I get with what I have?”.

Using conceptual design tools for the cycle system generates fast and reliable results to draw this type of conclusion. This paper presents both the qualitative and quantitative advantages of combined cycles for scalability using machines ranging from small to several hundred MW gas turbines to determine which configurations of S-CO2 bottoming cycles are best for pure electricity production.

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