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[en] In this paper, a thermodynamic analysis of a Sulfur-Iodine thermochemical hydrogen production cycle was performed. At first, a new heat exchanger network configuration was designed by means a heuristic method. Then, an exergy and anergy analysis was carried out in order to analyze the thermal efficiency of the proposed heat exchanger network compared to the reference case. With this study, a reduction of the energy inputs of the process was achieved; being 58.59% for cooling and 52.31% for heating, both lower than the reference case. Regarding the exergy y and anergy calculations for the new heat exchanger configuration, the calculated exergy was 365.202 MJ/K mol-H2 with an anergy of 187.66 MJ/ K mol-H2, being the latest lower than that for the reference case 338.97 MJ/K mol-H2. This means that less energy it is being wasted improving the thermal efficiency of the cycle and reducing the plant operational cost. (author)
[en] Hydrogen is considered to become a main energy vector in sustainable energy systems to store large amounts of intermittent wind and solar power. In this work, exergy efficiency and cost analyses are conducted to compare pathways of hydrogen generation (PEM, alkaline or solid oxide electrolysis), storage (compression, liquefaction or methanation), transportation (trailer or pipeline) and utilization (PEMFC, SOFC or combined cycle gas turbine). All processes are simulated with respect to their full and part-load efficiencies and resulting costs. Furthermore, load profiles are estimated to simulate a whole year of operation at varying loads. The results show power-to-power exergy efficiencies varying between about 17.5 and 43 %. The main losses occur at utilization and generation. Methanation features both lower efficiency and higher costs than compressed hydrogen pathways. While gas turbines show very high efficiency at full load, their efficiency drops significantly during load-following operation , while fuel cells (especially solid oxide) can maintain their efficiency and exceed the combined cycle gas turbine full-load efficiency. Overall specific costs between 245 €/MWh and 646 €/MWh are resulting from the simulation. Lower costs are commonly reached in chains with higher overall efficiencies. Installation costs are identified as predominant because of the low amount of full-load hours. To decrease the energy storage overall costs of the process chains, the options to use revenue generated by by-products such as oxygen and heat as well as changing the system application scenario are investigated. While the effect of the oxygen sale is negligible, the revenue generated by heat can significantly decrease overall costs. An increase of full-load by accounting for an electrolysis base-load to provide hydrogen for vehicles also shows a significant decreases in costs per stored energy down to 151 €/MWh at 2337 h/a full-load hours. The optimization of the exergy efficiency is performed by analysing physical and heat exergy recovery options such as expansion machines in the gas grid, the use of additional thermodynamic cycles (both Joule and Clausius-Rankine), as well as providing heat for steam electrolysis from compression inter-cooling, methanation or stored heat from a solid oxide fuel cell. The analysis shows that at full-load, process chains using solid oxide electrolysis, compressed hydrogen and a combined cycle gas turbine or a solid oxide fuel cells with a heat exergy recovery cycle can reach exergy efficiencies of 47 % and 45.5 %, respectively. A reversible solid oxide cell systems with metal-hydride heat and hydrogen storage can also reach 46.5 % exergy efficiency. The energy storage costs for these processes can be as low as 35 to 40 €/MWh at full-load. At load-following operation the efficiency of the fuel cell systems is expected to increase.