Liquid metal technology for heat transfer was developed for use in nuclear power stations. Applied to a gas turbine regenerative cycle plant, it makes high heat exchange rates in the regenerator, and low pressure losses as well on the air side as on the exhaust side economically possible. Its application permits combined cycle as well as regenerative cycle operation of the same gas turbine. Mixed operation in any ratio is also easily accomplished, so that the ratio of heat and electricity produced by the gas turbine plant is variable within a wide range.
This paper presents the results of thermodynamic calculations for such plants and describes the optimization of design parameters. Influences of the individual parameters of the regenerative cycle on the power output and efficiency of the plant are examined, and the reasonable limits for this application are outlined.
The advantages of applying liquid metal technology to gas turbines, such as a virtually pressureless liquid metal system, flexible operation, and separate optimization of the heat exchange coefficients for the air and exhaust flows are discussed.
Reference is also made to emissions, which are more complicated than those for combined or regenerative cycles because the plant is operated in both modes.