Implementing an optimisation model for turbine investment selection under fluctuating steam productions
Van Eldik, M.
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Engineering plants typically have a variety of interlinked production chains, where process flows are dependent on upstream or downstream events. Raw material feeds may fluctuate over time, resulting in fluctuating off-gas and steam productions, and therefore an inefficient energy resource usage. It is common practice to generate steam from burnable offgases, in boiler houses, where excess steam is allocated for power generation after plant usages. Over time fluctuating steam flow may result in turbine trips. A problem is that unused off-gases are flared where the energy potential goes to waste. This paper investigates turbine investment choices under fluctuating steam productions. A mathematical model is used that determines how steam should be distributed between turbines in a fluctuating environment, for optimal power generation. Investment options can be explored regarding which combination of turbines will result in higher power generation for the same combined power generation capabilities and how each turbine configuration will influence the total number of turbine trips due to steam shortages. A number of simulations are performed for various turbine configurations and it was found that an increase in the number of turbines for a fixed maximum total power generation capacity will deliver slightly higher power generation but significant more turbine trips. All simulations are based on real world data