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The development of a sub-atmospheric two-phase thermosyphon natural gas preheater using a lumped capacitance model and comparison with experimental results

Matallah, H; Newton, W; James, D; Cameron, I; Sienz, J; Romocki, S; Lavery, NP; (2016) The development of a sub-atmospheric two-phase thermosyphon natural gas preheater using a lumped capacitance model and comparison with experimental results. Applied Thermal Engineering , 104 pp. 767-778. 10.1016/j.applthermaleng.2016.05.078. Green open access

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Abstract

The pre-heating of natural gas supplied to both domestic and industrial use is required to counteract the Joule–Thomson effect due to pressure reduction. Most existing pre-heaters are in the form of water bath heaters, where both the burner and exchanger are immersed in a closed water tank. These systems usually have a low efficiency, and as a result of thermal inertia have a long time lag to accommodate changes in Natural Gas (NG) mass flow rates. In this paper, the two-phase thermosyphon theory is implemented in a sub-atmospheric context to design and study a new preheating system in a transient fashion. This system is partially vacuumed (absolute pressure of 2 kPa) to lower the temperature operation range to reduce the required working fluid volume, hence reduce the required energy and improve the response time. The transient numerical model is based on a lumped capacitance method, and the full system is solved by using a fourth order Runge–Kutta method. The numerical model is validated through comparison with experimental results. Minimum efficiency of 68% has been achieved in some tests, whilst maximum efficiency of 80% in other tests. Simulations of the thermosyphon preheater system have been performed to analyse the effect of changing the working fluid volume and composition.

Type: Article
Title: The development of a sub-atmospheric two-phase thermosyphon natural gas preheater using a lumped capacitance model and comparison with experimental results
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.applthermaleng.2016.05.078
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.applthermaleng.2016.05.0...
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Thermosyphon, Sub-atmospheric, Heat transfer, Joule–Thomson, Lumped-capacitance, Runge–Kutta
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Mechanical Engineering
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10048212
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