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Techno-economic evaluation of the hybrid sulphur chemical water splitting (HyS) process
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The constantly growing demand for energy and the consequent depletion of fossil fuels have led to a drive for energy that is environmentally friendly, efficient and sustainable. A viable source with the most potential of adhering to the criteria is nuclear-produced hydrogen. The hybrid sulphur cycle (HyS) is the proposed electrothermochemical process that can produce the energy carrier, hydrogen. The HyS consists of two unit operations, namely the electrolyzer and the decomposition reactor, that decomposes water into hydrogen and oxygen. A techno-economic evaluation of the technology is needed to prove the commercial potential of the cycle. This research project focuses on determining the hybrid sulphur cycle’s recommended operating parameter range that will support economic viability whilst maintaining a high efficiency. This is done by comparing the results of an evaluation of four case studies, all operating under different conditions. The technical evaluation of the research project is executed using the engineering tool Aspen PlusTM. The models used to achieve accurate results were OLI Mixed Solvent Electrolyte, oleum data package for use with Aspen PlusTM, which provides an accurate representation of the H2SO4 properties, and ELECNRTL to provide an accurate representation of H2SO4 at high temperature conditions. This evaluation provides insight into the efficiency of the process as well as the operating conditions that deliver the highest efficiency. The economic evaluation of the research project determines the hydrogen production costs for various operating conditions. These evaluations provide a recommended operating parameter range for the HyS to obtain high efficiency and economic viability.
- Engineering