1022 Steam Turbines

Steam turbine technology is one of the most versatile and oldest prime mover technologies used to drive generators or mechanical machinery. Steam turbines are widely used for CHP applications in the U.S. and Europe where special designs have been developed to maximize efficient steam utilization. Most of the electricity (>80%) in the U.S. is generated by conventional steam turbine power plants. The capacity of steam turbines can range from fractional horsepower to more than 1300 MW for large utility power plants.

A steam turbine does not directly convert a fuel source to electric energy but requires a source of high-pressure steam. The steam is usually produced in a boiler or heat recovery steam generator (HRSG). Boiler fuels can include fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and natural gas, or renewable fuels such as wood or municipal solid waste. Steam turbines offer a wide array of designs and complexity to match the desired application and/or performance specifications. Traditional utility applications maximize efficiency of electric power production with multiple pressure casings and other elaborate design features. For industrial applications, steam turbines are less complicated to increase reliability and reduce cost (e.g., generally single or dual casing). Both utility and industrial steam turbine designs can be adapted for CHP.

Solar Stirling Engine Basics Explained

Solar Stirling Engine Basics Explained

The solar Stirling engine is progressively becoming a viable alternative to solar panels for its higher efficiency. Stirling engines might be the best way to harvest the power provided by the sun. This is an easy-to-understand explanation of how Stirling engines work, the different types, and why they are more efficient than steam engines.

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