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      CommentAuthorTrim
    • CommentTimeOct 17th 2009
     
    Source LESA power

    LESA mixed steam power plant

    Does CURLiTRON have a rival? One that uses woodchips.
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    Do you have a better link? That one is entirely uninformative and the only other sites that seem to refer to a benzene steam cycle are firmly in the realms of loony.
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      CommentAuthorThicket
    • CommentTimeOct 17th 2009
     
    The LESA website access is a bit wonky, so I can't get to all the pages.

    The summary page is misleading though. They claim an efficiency of 60%. They quote efficiencies of other power generating processes. For example, gas turbine efficiencies of 25 - 34% are quoted. Lol. A modern gas turbine plant uses combined cycle technology, also using a steam turbine. The overall efficiency is 53 - 57%. I know this very well since I was plant manager of a natural gas fired, combined cycle power plant for 8 years.

    It's disingeneous to quote low efficiencies. This is obvious to someone familiar with power plants, so I have to wonder just who LESA is trying to convince.

    I haven't been able to access anything on the site that shows woodchips, but this is very old technology. A former boss of mine founded a company called Woodex back in the late 1970's. Their technology used pelletized wood chips as fuel for power plant boilers. There are dozens, perhaps hundreds of similar technologies in commercial use.

    I also note that the LESA technology uses benzene, a known carcinogen.

    I'll probably have more comments when I can see the rest of the site. Happily, I'm fluent in German.
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      CommentAuthorThicket
    • CommentTimeOct 17th 2009
     
    Some additional comments.

    I had to laugh at the statement that 'Nothing convinces more than a direct, objective comparison. *Snicker*

    So they compare on-line time to that of solar and wind plants. Hugely disingeneous. The very nature of wind and sun means that such plants don't run much. Also, how many commercial solar plants do you know of? I know of a couple. Large scale solar power is a niche market at best.

    A natural gas fired combined cycle plant has an on-line time of about 97%. Coal plants are in the low 90's. Hydro is in the high 90's. Nuclear is in the high 80's.

    A claim of 24/7 operation is complete B.S. Take it from someone who has operated large plants for most of his career. Sure, a good plant will run continuously for months, maybe even a couple of years. Then it has to shut down for maintenance.

    And then we get to the woo-woo part. They state that recompression of benzene/water takes less energy than expansion. This is your classic perpetual motion, free-energy claim. It seems they want you to believe that you endlessly cycle compression/expansion and draw off the excess energy. Sounds a bit like Orbo, doesn't it?
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      CommentAuthorThicket
    • CommentTimeOct 17th 2009 edited
     
    Edited.... LESA technology does not use Heat Pipes.

    I almost choked when I read what the LESA technology does. They feed a mixed benzene/steam phase directly to a turbine? Hokey smokes!! Can you imagine a leak with hot benzene vapour spreading throughout a power plant? You'd never have to fumigate the place, because everything would be dead.

    I suppose you could develop the technology for strict controls like nuclear power plants, but it would be hugely expensive.
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      CommentAuthorTrim
    • CommentTimeOct 17th 2009
     
    Thanks
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      CommentAuthorping1400
    • CommentTimeOct 17th 2009
     
    A new combined cycle plant went into production in the Netherlands today, over 800 MW, 59% efficiency.
    Another one is planned to be build in two years, latest Siemens combined cycle design, with 60% efficiency.