FlexiHAT: Flexible heat production using mHAT

 

The FlexiHAT (or Flexible Heat Production with micro Humid Air Turbines) project studies the numerical, experimental and economic performance of micro Humid Air Turbines (mHAT)

mHAT-low

 

At Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) the first-of-it’s-kind mHAT unit has been built and is able to operate with water injection in stable conditions. Simulations in Aspen Plus have shown a potential efficiency increase of 4% (absolute) in wet operation mode. However, if mHAT units are to operate in real conditions, with fluctuating heat and power demand, the transient behaviour of the technology needs to be characterised. For this reason, within FlexiHAT a transient model of the VUB mHAT is under construction and the dynamic behaviour of the unit will be studied.

In addition, we will carry out experimental campaigns with the objective of fully outlining the efficiency map of the facility for varying load and humidification levels.

We are performing an economic analysis of the technology in order to determine whether the extra cost associated to mHAT units compensates for the flexibility in heat and electricity production. To ensure the applicability of the study, we are considering a wide variety of heat and electricity price scenarios. Preliminary results show that, whenever the projects are economically feasible, mHAT technology always outperforms micro gas turbines.