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OTEC - Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Energy Technology.
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Energy Technology.
2012 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

OTEC is a technology where power is produced by utilizing the temperature difference in the oceans between surface water and water from the deep. It is considered that a temperature difference of 20K is required – a temperature difference found close to the equator.This report investigates if OTEC can produce enough electricity to provide 100 000 people, living on a generic island of 10 km2 somewhere alongside the equator in the pacific ocean, with their electricity needs. In this project a literature review has been made to establish a basic knowledge of OTEC and later a mathematical model has been programmed and simulated. Finally the results of the simulation has been examined and discussed.Two different cycles has been simulated alongside each other with the goal to establish which one of these two cycles that were best suited the island. To facilitate computing some assumptions and simplifications were made.The closed cycle (CC) was the most effective but the open cycle (OC) had several positive synergies that the closed cycle didn’t have. The costs of a facility of both cycles were based on older studies in the field and the conclusion was that the open cycle was the cheaper one. Facilities of both cycles can effectively meet the islands energy needs but if OC is chosen before CC more facilities has to be built due to the OC has lower energy output.Further work and development is necessary before OTEC seriously can challenge todays fossil fuel based energy systems, or until the oil starts to get too expensive. Today OTEC technology demands large investments but if the positive environmental effects and the fact that the island releases itself from import of energy are taken into account there are incentives to invest in OTEC already.

Abstract [sv]

OTEC är en teknik där kraft utvinns från havsvatten genom att utnyttja temperaturdifferensen mellan ytvatten och vatten från djupet. Denna teknik kräver dock generellt en temperaturdifferens på minst 20K. En sådan temperaturskillnad är geografiskt begränsad till den tropiska zonen runt ekvatorn.I rapporten undersöks om OTEC kan användas till att förse 100 000 människor, boende på en 10 stor generisk ö i just den tropiska zonen, med dess elbehov. I detta projekt har det gjorts en litteraturstudie för att etablera en kunskapsbas och sedan gjorts en matematisk modell i programmet EES och slutligen har resultaten från modellen granskats och diskuterats. I modellen jämfördes två olika cykler och målet var att bestämma vilken av dessa som var det bästa alternativet för ön. För att underlätta beräkningarna gjordes vissa antaganden och förenklingar.Den slutna cykeln var mest effektiv men den öppna cykeln (OC) hade positiva synergieffekter som den sluta cykeln (CC) saknade. Kostnaden för en anläggning baserades på äldre studier och enligt dessa var den öppna cykeln billigare än den slutna. Anläggningar av de båda cyklerna kan tillgodose den fiktiva öns energibehov, det behöver dock byggas fler anläggningar om OC väljs framför CC.Det kommer krävas ytterligare arbete med att utveckla tekniken innan OTEC på allvar kan utmana dagens fossilbränslebaserade energisystem – eller att oljan helt enkelt blir för dyr. Idag är OTEC för dyrt för att kunna motiveras rent ekonomiskt, men om även miljövinsterna beaktas, samt att ön befriar sig från importer och därigenom får större kontroll över sitt eget energisystem, finns goda incitament att investera i OTEC redan idag.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. , 41 p.
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-98974OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-98974DiVA: diva2:539961
Subject / course
Energy Technology
Educational program
Master of Science in Engineering - Mechanical Engineering
Uppsok
Technology
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2012-08-14 Created: 2012-07-05 Last updated: 2012-08-14Bibliographically approved

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