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The effect of wind on the optimal design and performance of a modular air-cooled condenser for a concentrated solar power plant


  • Butler, C.
  • Grimes, R.


Air-cooled condensers overcome one of the main issues facing the construction of concentrated solar power plants by replacing water with air as the medium for cooling of the steam turbine waste heat. The recent development of modular air-cooled condensers as an improvement on conventional designs means that the effect of wind on their performance needs to be quantified. This study examines these effects by numerically modelling the condenser at the system level and using the results to build a mathematical model to predict the optimal condenser configuration. These types of mathematical models can be easily used by a power plant designer to quickly predict what the performance of the power plant will be based on the condenser geometry using data from numerical models of appropriate size and boundary conditions. The designer can then make a trade-off between the plant performance and initial capital costs in commissioning the power plant.

Suggested Citation

  • Butler, C. & Grimes, R., 2014. "The effect of wind on the optimal design and performance of a modular air-cooled condenser for a concentrated solar power plant," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 68(C), pages 886-895.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:energy:v:68:y:2014:i:c:p:886-895
    DOI: 10.1016/

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Yang, L.J. & Wang, M.H. & Du, X.Z. & Yang, Y.P., 2012. "Trapezoidal array of air-cooled condensers to restrain the adverse impacts of ambient winds in a power plant," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 99(C), pages 402-413.
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    6. Liu, Lihua & Du, Xiaoze & Xi, Xinming & Yang, Lijun & Yang, Yongping, 2013. "Experimental analysis of parameter influences on the performances of direct air cooled power generating unit," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 117-123.
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    Cited by:

    1. O’Donovan, Alan & Grimes, Ronan & Sikora, Paul, 2019. "Enhanced performance of air-cooled thermal power plants using low temperature thermal storage," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 250(C), pages 1673-1685.
    2. Yang, Tingting & Wang, Wei & Zeng, Deliang & Liu, Jizhen & Cui, Can, 2017. "Closed-loop optimization control on fan speed of air-cooled steam condenser units for energy saving and rapid load regulation," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 135(C), pages 394-404.
    3. Xianwei Huang & Lin Chen & Lijun Yang & Xiaoze Du & Yongping Yang, 2019. "Cooling Performance Enhancement of Air-Cooled Condensers by Guiding Air Flow," Energies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 12(18), pages 1-28, September.
    4. Chen, Lei & Yang, Lijun & Du, Xiaoze & Yang, Yongping, 2016. "A novel layout of air-cooled condensers to improve thermo-flow performances," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 165(C), pages 244-259.
    5. Luceño, José A. & Martín, Mariano, 2018. "Two-step optimization procedure for the conceptual design of A-frame systems for solar power plants," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 165(PB), pages 483-500.
    6. Li, Xiaoen & Wang, Ningling & Wang, Ligang & Yang, Yongping & Maréchal, François, 2018. "Identification of optimal operating strategy of direct air-cooling condenser for Rankine cycle based power plants," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 209(C), pages 153-166.
    7. Najafi, Gholamhassan & Ghobadian, Barat & Yusaf, Talal & Safieddin Ardebili, Seyed Mohammad & Mamat, Rizalman, 2015. "Optimization of performance and exhaust emission parameters of a SI (spark ignition) engine with gasoline–ethanol blended fuels using response surface methodology," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 90(P2), pages 1815-1829.


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