MEchanics GAthering –MEGA- Seminar: Design and development of a high-temperature high-speed turbocompressor for combined heat and power


Event details

Date 25.04.2024
Hour 16:1517:15
Speaker Victoria He (LAMD, EPFL)
Location Online
Category Conferences - Seminars
Event Language English
Abstract: For low-emission, small-scale combined heat and power generation, integrating a biomass gasifier with a downstream SOFC system is very promising due to their similar operating conditions. To couple both systems, a high-temperature and oil-free compressor is required to compress and push the low-density high-temperature bio-syngas from the gasifier to the SOFC stack. The development of this high-speed compressor-turbine-unit consisting of a radial compressor and a cantilever steam turbine supported on dynamic gas bearings is presented here. An iterative process involving preliminary design, meanline analysis, commercial tools and in-house codes is used for the design, which is then numerically analyzed using computational fluid dynamics. The goal is to achieve a design with a wide operating range and high robustness towards manufacturing deviation. The designed machine runs up to 210 krpm at temperatures of 525°C. Due to the high rotor speeds and high temperatures, the rotor is supported on dynamic, steam-lubricated bearings. The centrifugal compressor has a tip diameter of 38mm, and a 2.8kW low reaction cantilever steam turbine is used to drive the machine. A low-reaction, full-admission turbine design has been chosen to lower the steam consumption, the axial forces, and the turbine backface leakage. Both impellers are made of Ti6Al4V for structural integrity and coated to prevent hydrogen embrittlement from the hot bio-syngas.

Bio: Victoria has a B.Sc. Engineering Sciences and a M.Sc. Energy and Process Engineering degree from the Technical University of Munich, with focus on renewable energy systems. During her ongoing doctorate studies at Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale of Lausanne, Victoria further deepened her knowledge on the topics of small-scale high-speed turbomachinery, Solid Oxide Fuel Cell systems, Combined Heat and Power systems as well as Carbon Capture and Storage technologies.
She is working on realistic, feasible and small-scale renewable energy solutions for a fast energy transition towards carbon neutrality.

Practical information

  • General public
  • Free


  • MEGA.Seminar Organizing Committee


mall scale turbomachinery aerodynamic design renewable energy combined heat and power