The world’s current electricity demand stands at over 23 Thousand TeraWatt hours (TWh), which is predicted to increase to 40 Thousand TWh by 2050. This is based on trajectories that consider increased demand due to digitisation, electrification of transport and industry, and production of hydrogen (IEA, 2019).
Current energy mix is dominated by fossil fuels but this demand for fossil fuels is diminishing due to depleting reserves but more importantly climate emergency. Future energy sources will be dominated by low-carbon and renewable energy technologies to meet UN Sustainability Development Goal (SDG). Advanced Nuclear Technologies (ANT) offer the prospect of electricity generation and decarbonisation of a wide range of processes as part of co-generation. However, there is little understanding of the dependencies and requirements of the heat exchanger and the heat management system, due to the challenges of modelling the various technologies, in combination with the reactor. This makes decision-making and investment routes for development challenging. This creates the need for the application of high-fidelity modelling of the technologies to understand dependencies and requirements for technology development and maturity.
EGB Engineering MoHECANTe project involved modelling and simulation of Advanced Nuclear Technologies, specifically the reactor, heat exchanger and the energy conversion systems to understand and quantify the requirements that they place on heat transfer and the management systems for electricity and process heat.
- Model build and Verification using EGB’s proprietary in-house tool – HYPER-ION;
- Modelling and simulation improved understanding of ANTs, demonstrating high-level performance feasibility of power offtake for cogeneration of electricity and hydrogen, including additional power for more electricity or district heating and other services;
- Determined performance characteristics of different cycles, and component configurations;
- Determined dependencies and requirements using parametric studies;
- Future framework for UK determined to emphasise importance of risks and economics in assessments, based on EGB’s own framework.