Economic assessment of gas-steam systems taking account of variable loads

Sebastian Lepszy, Tadeusz Tadeusz Chmielniak, Daniel Czaja


Increasing competition from high-power gas technologies on the energy market depends on many factors. Apart from the requirement to meet ecological criteria, the most important of them are: an improvement in thermal flexibility, favourable characteristics of performance under variable loads and the economic efficiency related thereto. The adaptability of gas technologies to changes in loads in the 24-hour cycle is now gaining special importance. This paper is focused on issues related to adapting the methodology of economic calculations to changing functions of gas technologies in the electricity generation sub-sector. In the new market environment, the economic model comprising a certain number of parameters (which usually characterize the base load) and taking account of revenues coming from this type of operation does not provide a full picture. First and foremost, it does not indicate additional revenues that could potentially be earned from new market possibilities related to rendering system services and lessening the environmental impact. Generally speaking, a more accurate approach to the assessment of gas-steam systems has to take account of basic parameters that determine thermal flexibility (start-up and shutdown times), issues related to maintaining availability, changes in efficiency under variable loads and emissions characteristics.

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