MHK Technologies/Sea Solar Power Plant

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Technology Profile


Technology Resource
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Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC)
Technology Type
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Closed-cycle

Technology Description A stationary floating plant skims off a small percentage of the surface layer to use as the heat source. For the heat sink, the plant has a large diameter submerged pipe to pump up the heavier frigid water below. A small amount of heat is extracted from the warm water and a lesser amount is put into the cold water. The net difference in energy flow is turned into electricity and fresh water and/or fuels and other useful products. Electricity is transmitted to shore through an underwater cable.The warm surface ocean water is pumped to the boiler, which transfers heat to the working fluid, turning it into a high-pressure vapor. The turbine generator spins as the vapor rushes through it to reach the low-pressure condenser, which is cooled by the nearly freezing water brought up from the ocean depths. After condensing, the working fluid is sent back to the boiler to be reused and to repeat the cycle.



Mooring Configuration Floating structure, similar to a semi-submersible drill rig. Connected to a shore station with an electric cable. It is dynamically positioned but we may use light mooring depending on the specific location. For the most part these plants will be in deep but still waters. Because top side surface will be at a minimum there will be minimum wind load. Currents in an area must be measured to depth so that the use of effluent water as a dynamic force and the need for thrusters will be determined.
Optimum Marine/Riverline Conditions The highest temperature differentials that are available at a site allow the largest output from a given size plant. Now whatever nameplate output is called for from a plant at a specific site, that plant may have more heat exchangers, and more water flow required if the temperature differential at that site is lower than another site. Wave height, wave period, water velocity, will have relatively little effect except if we were to site a plant in a specific storm area or unusually high current. But this is unlikely.

Technology Dimensions
Technology Nameplate Capacity (MW) 10 - 100
Device Testing
Date Submitted 10/8/2010

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