The project objective is to study the feasibility and cost/benefit of recovering heat energy from diesel exhaust and turbocharged air for rural Alaskan villages, which use diesel generators for power generation. The project entails selecting the most appropriate heat recovery application for the type of diesel generators used in rural Alaskan villages, design of experimental exhaust and after-cooler heat recovery systems for testing, feasibility study, and economic analysis, and the choice of a village diesel generator for field demonstration.
University of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK
Alaska Village Energy Corporation, Anchorage, AK
In rural Alaska, there are nearly 200 villages consuming about 400 Million kWh of electricity per year. If the waste heat in the exhaust and turbocharged air were put to appropriate use, there would be a significant fuel savings.
The heat recovery application has been determined based on the need and potential benefit. Selected applications include two different types of space heating and community water loop heating.
An experimental exhaust heat recovery system has been designed, installed, and instrumented. Test results have been obtained from 350 hours of system operation. Based on the experimental data, analysis has been conducted and the following preliminary conclusions have been obtained:
Besides the potential of gaining significant fuel savings and the associated economic benefits, application of exhaust heat recovery may also reduce emissions of greenhouse gases. The potential benefit obtained from applying an exhaust heat recovery system is case-dependent. Influential factors may include distance between engine room and area to serve, equipment shipping cost, local fuel cost, etc.
According to the experimental data obtained from 350 hours of operation of the exhaust heat recovery system, the tentative conclusion is that applying exhaust heat recovery for heating is feasible and beneficial. To further confirm this conclusion, more test data and further investigation are recommended. Currently, researchers are undertaking more data collection and analysis for the exhaust heat recovery system, development of the design specification of a turbocharger air heat recovery system, and preparing a final report.
The project is completed. The final project report is listed below under "Additional Information".
This project was awarded under DOE solicitation number DE-FC28-01NT41248.
$67,124 (22% of total)
Final Project Report [PDF-85.17MB] April, 2009