ORC Technology


Renewable energy power plants based on Turboden ORC units generate electric and thermal power through a closed thermodynamic cycle which follows the principle of the Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC). 

The Organic Rankine Cycle's principle is based on a turbogenerator working as a normal steam turbine to transform thermal energy into mechanical energy and finally into electric energy through an electric generator. The core difference with the conventional steam power cycle lies with the working medium. Instead of water, ORC based systems use an organic fluid of higher molecular mass and lower boiling point allowing for several mechanical advantages:

 higher heat source flexibility due to lower vaporization temperatures,

 slower rotation of the turbine,

 lower operating pressure and

 no erosion of the metallic parts and blades.



The Organic Rankine Cycle consists of 4 main processes: vaporization, expansion, condensation and compression.  


The turbogenerator uses the hot temperature thermal oil to pre-heat and vaporize a suitable organic working fluid in the evaporator (8 → 3 → 4);

The organic fluid vapor powers the turbine (4 → 5), which is directly coupled to the electric generator through an elastic coupling;

The exhaust vapor flows through the regenerator (5 → 9) where it heats the organic liquid (2 → 8);

The vapor is then condensed in the condenser (cooled by the water flow) (9 → 6 → 1);

The organic fluid liquid is finally pumped (1 →2) to the regenerator and then to the evaporator, thus completing the sequence of operations in the closed-loop circuit. 


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