Assembled at Stony Brook’s Advanced Energy Research and Technology Center are ARPA-E awardees, from left: Rebecca Trojanowski, Brookhaven National Laboratory; Professor William Worek, Stony Brook University; Professor Jon Longtin, Stony Brook University; Dr.Tom Butcher, Brookhaven National Laboratory, and Professor Ya Wang, Stony Brook University. Photo credit: Stony Brook University Newsroom
By Lauren Fetter
A research team at Stony Brook University was awarded $2.5 million from the U.S. Department of Energy’s to develop a system that provides supplemental cooling for the plant and reduce water use. The goal of the research, led by Professor Jon Longtin from the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the university, is to condense water out of flue gas to provide additional cooling that may enable power plants to be built in dry and land-locked areas.
The Department of Energy states that projects funded by the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E)have the potential to radically improve U.S. economic prosperity, national security and environmental well-being. The grant, which is one of four given to the university this year, is under the category of Advanced Research in Dry cooling (ARID), and will last for three years. The nationally-awarded ARID projects focus on transforming new power plant cooling technologies.
“This national award to Professor Longtin and his colleagues is a tremendous example of the cutting-edge energy research taking place at Stony Brook and in collaboration with Brookhaven National Laboratory,” said Samuel L. Stanley Jr., MD, President of Stony Brook University. “An educator at Stony Brook for the past 20 years, Professor Longtin’s leadership as an innovative researcher in the area of thermal science will lead the way to a successful project to help transform energy practices for the future.”
The technology will be housed at the NY State Center of Excellence in Advanced Energy Research and Technology at Stony Brook and Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL). Using a high-performance thermosyphon, the thermal resistance for heat transfer can be substantially reduced. The condensate is then stored and used for subsequent evaporative cooling using commercially available technologies.
“This technology has substantial promise for next-generation electric power plants in dry regions all around the country, particularly as water use continues to become a national concern,” said Prof. Longtin. “The technology is suited for coal, natural gas, or combined-cycle power plants. We are extremely grateful for the opportunity that ARPA-E has provided to further the development of this technology.”
Research staff at BNL will play an integral role in the project, which will include hosting the planned prototype demonstration.