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Process principle ORC in Indonesia for a geothermal plant

Dürr Cyplan’s ORC system increases the efficiency of a geothermal power plant in Indonesia

Bietigheim-Bissingen, February 28, 2014 – Dürr Cyplan’s ORC technology (Organic Rankine Cycle) will increase the efficiency of a geothermal power plant in Indonesia. The pilot plant, used during a project of a German research institute in this Southeast Asian country, can increase the amount of electricity generated by up to 10%.

Geothermal power plants in Indonesia use steam to drive turbines and generate electricity. High-pressure hot water from a reservoir in the earth’s interior rises to the top through a borehole and evaporates in the power plant upon decompression. The steam is fed into the turbine, which produces electricity by means of a generator. Any water that has not evaporated is reinjected into the earth’s interior while still hot.

In future, the ORC system will be integrated into the cycle before the water is reinjected into the earth. It can generate additional electricity using the thermal energy of the hot water. Steam also drives a turbine in the ORC system. However, this steam is extracted from another medium, which is evaporated with the hot water. This medium has a far lower evaporation point than water.

The ORC pilot plant in Indonesia has an electrical capacity of 500 kW. It increases the efficiency of the system as a whole. This technology makes it possible to produce up to 10% more electricity in existing power plants.

Dürr Cyplan® received the order for the pilot project in November 2013. The ORC system will be completely pre-assembled and tested in Germany before being delivered to the Southeast Asian country. Indonesia has around 40% of the world’s geothermal resources and is a pioneer in generating electricity from geothermal energy.

Expanding its energy efficiency business is a strategic focus at Dürr. Aside from ORC, the company offers further technologies for the efficient use of heat and waste heat. These include heat pumps, heat exchangers, and the Dürr Compact Power System which provides electricity and heat at the same time. Dürr’s activities in the area of energy efficiency and environmental technology have been combined under the Clean Technology Systems business unit since 2011.