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Power-User

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Orinda, CA
Posts: 255
Good Answers: 14

Water Consumption of Power Plants

07/23/2011 1:29 PM

The scarcity of fresh water is holding up the proposed 3000 MW Blue Castle nuclear plant in Utah.

"In the United States, power generation consumes 20 percent of the water not used by agriculture. ... Gas-fired plants consume the least water per unit of energy produced; coal- and oil-fired plants consume twice as much water as a gas-fired plant; and nuclear plants consume three times as much as a gas-fired plant." Quotes are from this report. Chemical capture of CO2 (amine scrubbing) is profoundly non-feasible for several reasons, including that it would double the water consumption of "clean coal" plants.

"Consume" means that the water is gone and no longer available for other uses. That's the figure that counts. "Withdrawal" is something different, where the water is used for cooling and then returned heated to the environment.

Water withdrawals for open-loop wet cooling (once-through) are being shut down over concerns over thermal pollution and fish fatalities. The Indian Point nuclear plant is an example. So power plants will have to find some better way than conventional closed-loop wet cooling to condense the turbine exhaust steam.

We need to reduce the amount of water wasted into the atmosphere from thermal power plants. Any ideas? Mine will be published as US Patent 7,987,677 on Aug. 2, 2011.

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Guru
Hobbies - Automotive Performance - New Member Popular Science - Weaponology - New Member

Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Want to be: 34° 34' 21.60" N, 92° 55' 42.28" W Really am in Arizona
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#1

Re: Water Consumption of Power Plants

07/24/2011 12:00 AM

So,

Nobody considered the fact that there was no water before they proposed the, "3000 MW Blue Castle nuclear plant in Utah."

This is the height of arrogance.

"I want to build a nuclear power plant here, where's my water?"

My idea would be to build the plant where the water is.

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Power-User
Popular Science - Weaponology - New Member

Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Berkeley, CA USA
Posts: 118
Good Answers: 4
#2

Re: Water Consumption of Power Plants

07/24/2011 1:26 PM

They should not even bother fueling that thing. BEC is working on a simmilar technology to the one in this link
http://pesn.com/2011/07/21/9501874_Rossis_Self_Sustaining_One_Megawatt_Reactor/

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Power-User

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Orinda, CA
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#3
In reply to #2

Re: Water Consumption of Power Plants

07/24/2011 2:43 PM

The Rossi reactor produces heat, but making heat into electricity requires a Rankine cycle using some working fluid. My preference is for an organic working fluid, instead of water, for power harvesting from low temperature waste heat sources like the Rossi reactor. See http://www.freepatentsonline.com/7980078.pdf

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Power-User
Popular Science - Weaponology - New Member

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Location: Berkeley, CA USA
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#4
In reply to #3

Re: Water Consumption of Power Plants

07/24/2011 5:56 PM

Yes, but now you can buy them off the shelf! http://www.infinityturbine.com

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Guru
United Kingdom - Member - Indeterminate Engineering Fields - Control Engineering - New Member

Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: In the bothy, 7 chains down the line from Dodman's Lane level crossing, in the nation formerly known as Great Britain - possibly to become "South Scotland" or "Non-Caledonia" from September 2016. Kettle's on.
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#5

Re: Water Consumption of Power Plants

07/29/2011 6:38 AM

<...water wasted into the atmosphere...>

.....comes back round the water cycle, so it isn't "gone". Neither is it "wasted".

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Associate

Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Located in INDIA.Kerala state,kottayam Dt,pala.
Posts: 43
#6

Re: Water Consumption of Power Plants

08/02/2011 11:03 AM

Trap the cool air at 1000 m height layer by closed loop air circulation,and cool exhaust steam and save water.PREFERABLY SITE BE NEAR THE MOUNTAIN

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Active Contributor

Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 17
#7

Water Consumption of Power Plants

09/16/2011 12:59 PM

A million dollar question no one responds to.

I asked this same question to the Boiler Fabricators who were with me in a SULZER sponsored Pumpin Technology Seminar.

The question was - "Have you or are you designing a boiler which can use sea water without treatment, because fresh water will become a trading commodity in a very near future"

I had Foster Wheeler, Bobock Wilcox, Ansaldo and so many of "who-is who' from Boiler industries, but all were either deaf or dumb because none stood up and replied me.

Unless these biggies come with a boiler using sea water, the thermal plants will die a natural death or will be hanged by the locales.

It is better to be dumb than to put foot in mouth.

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Power-User

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Location: Orinda, CA
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#8
In reply to #7

Re: Water Consumption of Power Plants

09/16/2011 1:46 PM

Seawater is not suitable for boilers because scale forms on the heat exchange surfaces as the hardness (calcium carbonate and other heat-stable salts) comes out of solution with heat. What you get is a hard crust that blocks the heat exchange.

Boiler water is not the issue. Boiler water softening is important, but it is not the main constraint on thermal power plants. The evaporation of cooling water into the atmosphere out of cooling towers is what makes thermal power plants the second largest water consumers.

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