A micro gas turbines for UK domestic combined heat and power

A. Clay, G.D. Tansley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Various micro-radial compressor configurations were investigated using one-dimensional meanline and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) techniques for use in a micro gas turbine (MGT) domestic combined heat and power (DCHP) application. Blade backsweep, shaft speed, and blade height were varied at a constant pressure ratio. Shaft speeds were limited to 220 000 r/min, to enable the use of a turbocharger bearing platform. Off-design compressor performance was established and used to determine the MGT performance envelope; this in turn was used to assess potential cost and environmental savings in a heat-led DCHP operating scenario within the target market of a detached family home. A low target-stage pressure ratio provided an opportunity to reduce diffusion within the impeller. Critically for DCHP, this produced very regular flow, which improved impeller performance for a wider operating envelope. The best performing impeller was a low-speed, 170 000 r/min, low-backsweep, 15° configuration producing 71.76 per cent stage efficiency at a pressure ratio of 2.20. This produced an MGT design point system efficiency of 14.85 per cent at 993 W, matching prime movers in the latest commercial DCHP units. Cost and CO2 savings were 10.7 per cent and 6.3 per cent, respectively, for annual power demands of 17.4 MWht and 6.1 MWhe compared to a standard condensing boiler (with grid) installation. The maximum cost saving (on design point) was 14.2 per cent for annual power demands of 22.62 MWht and 6.1 MWhe corresponding to an 8.1 per cent CO2 saving. When sizing, maximum savings were found with larger heat demands. When sized, maximum savings could be made by encouraging more electricity export either by reducing household electricity consumption or by increasing machine efficiency.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)839-849
Number of pages11
JournalProceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part A: Journal of Power and Energy
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2010


  • micro-radial compressor configuration
  • one-dimensional meanline
  • computational fluid dynamics techniques
  • micro gas turbine
  • domestic combined heat and power


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