Thermodynamic performance optimization of a combined power/cooling cycle


A combined thermal power and cooling cycle has already been proposed in which thermal energy is used to produce work and to generate a sub-ambient temperature stream that is suitable for cooling applications. The cycle uses ammonia-water mixture as working fluid and is a combination of a Rankine cycle and absorption cycle. The very high ammonia vapor concentration, exiting turbine under certain operating conditions, can provide power output as well as refrigeration. In this paper, the goal is to employ multi-objective algorithms for Pareto approach optimization of thermodynamic performance of the cycle. It has been carried out by varying the selected design variables, namely, turbine inlet pressure (P(h)), superheater temperature (T(superheat)) and condenser temperature (T(condensor)). The important conflicting thermodynamic objective functions that have been considered in this study are turbine work (w(T)), cooling capacity (q(cool)) and thermal efficiency (eta(th)) of the cycle. It is shown that some interesting and important relationships among optimal objective functions and decision variables involved in the combined cycle can be discovered consequently. Such important relationships as useful optimal design principles would have not been obtained without the use of a multi-objective optimization approach.