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Optimized Flow Sheet for a Reference Commercial-Scale Nuclear-Driven High-Temperature Electrolysis Hydrogen Production Plant

Description: This report presents results from the development and optimization of a reference commercialscale high-temperature electrolysis (HTE) plant for hydrogen production. The reference plant design is driven by a high-temperature helium-cooled reactor coupled to a direct Brayton power cycle. The reference design reactor power is 600 MWt, with a primary system pressure of 7.0 MPa, and reactor inlet and outlet fluid temperatures of 540° C and 900°C, respectively. The electrolysis unit used to produce hydrogen consists of 4.176 × 10 6 cells with a per-cell active area of 225 cm2. A nominal cell area-specific resistance, ASR, value of 0.4 Ohm•cm2 with a current density of 0.25 A/cm2 was used, and isothermal boundary conditions were assumed. The optimized design for the reference hydrogen production plant operates at a system pressure of 5.0 MPa, and utilizes an air-sweep system to remove the excess oxygen that is evolved on the anode side of the electrolyzer. The inlet air for the air-sweep system is compressed to the system operating pressure of 5.0 MPa in a four-stage compressor with intercooling. The overall system thermal-to-hydrogen production efficiency (based on the low heating value of the produced hydrogen) is 49.07% at a hydrogen production rate of 2.45 kg/s with the high-temperature helium-cooled reactor concept. The information presented in this report is intended to establish an optimized design for the reference nuclear-driven HTE hydrogen production plant so that parameters can be compared with other hydrogen production methods and power cycles to evaluate relative performance characteristics and plant economics.
Date: November 1, 2007
Creator: McKellar, M. G.; O'Brien, J. E.; Harvego, E. A. & Herring, J. S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department