Economic Analysis of Small-Scale Solar Organic Rankine Cycle (SORC) System
A small-scale solar organic Rankine cycle is a promising renewable energy -driven power generation technology that can be used in the rural areas of developing countries. A prototype was developed and tested for its performance characteristics under a range of solar source temperatures. The solar ORC system power output was calculated based on the thermal and solar collector efficiency. The maximum solar power output was observed in April. The solar ORC unit power output ranged from 0.4 kW to 1.38 kW during the year. The highest power output was obtained when the expander inlet pressure was 13 bar and the solar source temperature was 120 °C. The area of the collector for the investigation was calculated based on the meteorological conditions of Busan city (South Korea). Economic analysis was carried out to determine the cost of energy per kWh from the solar ORC. The selling price of electricity generation was found to be $0.68/kWh and $0.39/kWh for prototype and low cost solar ORC respectively. The sensitivity analysis was carried out in order to find the influencing economic parameters for the change in NPV.