A Multi-Vane Expander, by Adding Power, Can Improve The Fuel Economy Of Long-Haul Diesel Trucks 780689
An organic Rankine Bottoming cycle added to Diesel engines used for long-haul trucks has the potential of improving their peak fuel economy by up to 15% over a typical duty cycle. General Electric has developed a multi-vane rotary expander which has a measured isentropic brake efficiency of 80+% over a wide range of speed and power levels with organic working fluids. High cycle efficiency for design and off-design conditions is achieved with the multi-vane expander. The potential advantages of the multi-vane expander for the Diesel engine bottoming cycle include the elimination of a high speed gear box and the potential for over 80% isentropic engine efficiency. The multi-vane expander is a ruggedly built component running at Diesel engine speed. This paper describes the design and evaluation of a nominal 40 HP multi-vane expander for this application. The results of preliminary cycle analysis and preliminary hardware evaluation lead to the conclusion that the multi-vane rotary expander is an attractive alternate to a highspeed turbine/gearbox combination.