A novel scroll expander for flank leakage investigation: Preliminary tests

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Fanti G.R.
Donato G.H.B.
de Mello P.E.B.
ECOS 2016 - Proceedings of the 29th International Conference on Efficiency, Cost, Optimisation, Simulation and Environmental Impact of Energy Systems
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© 2016 University of Ljubljana.The isentropic efficiency of the expander is a concern for organic Rankine cycle (ORC) and compressed air energy storage (CAES) implementation. In these applications, the expander alone has a great influence over the whole system efficiency. Scroll expanders are particularly interesting for the low power range comprehended between 1 and 10 kW. Many previous works have attributed to internal leakages a great importance to obtain high isentropic efficiency in these machines. We present herein experimental results obtained with a novel scroll expander constructed to investigate the effect of internal leakages. We discuss the geometry definition and design of the prototype in detail. The maximum mechanical power produced by the prototype was 923 W at 2690 rpm but its isentropic efficiency was only 30.6%. Filling factor as high as 4.9 reveals that internal leakage must be reduced to obtain a more efficient expander.