Power Generation, Flooded Compression, Flooded Expansion
In this paper, the use of liquid flooding is examined to create a high efficiency Ericsson Power Cycle. The introduction of significant amounts of liquid into the compression and expansion processes of a gas leads to quasi-isothermal behavior approximating that of an Ericsson cycle. A thermodynamic model is presented and various working fluid pairs are examined under operating conditions suitable for solar thermal power generation. The Liquid-Flooded Ericsson Cycle (LFEC) can be manufactured with fixed volume ratio machinery currently mass produced for the refrigeration industry. In this manner low cost, distributed solar thermal generation can be promoted. The thermodynamic performance of the LFEC is compared to that of other power cycles proposed for solar thermal systems. It is shown that for sufficiently high component efficiencies the Liquid-Flooded Ericsson Cycle provides higher thermal efficiencies than any other power cycle currently under consideration.