Turbine Cooling Turns Night Into Day

A New Efficient Way to Keep Turbines Working



“Wind turbine blades” by vaxomatic is licensed under CC BY 2.0

By: Adam Mokatrin, Journalist

It can be difficult to keep turbines working effectively on a humid Australian summer day. However, a new invention is making things simpler by using cool night air. Many power stations use gas turbines, but they need large quantities of fossil or renewable fuels to keep going. When it gets humid, their energy efficiency plummets by as much as 30% until the temperature reaches 40 degrees Celsius. Researchers at the University of Technology Sydney’s Institute of Sustainable Futures have developed a system that can increase the reliability and lower the cost of vital infrastructure that operates in the desert and semi-arid environments, making it suitable for use in the Australian mining industry and remote communities. “I thought if we could cool water to around 20 degrees Celsius at night, store it pretty simply in a tank, then once it gets hot during the day use it to indirectly cool the air that goes into the turbine,” says inventor Adjunct Professor Juergen Peterseim.

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