Energy from Low Temperature Differences

    Research output: NRELTechnical Report


    A number of energy conservation and alternative energy approaches utilize a low temperature heat source. Applications in this category include: Solar ponds; Ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC); Low temperature solar thermal; Geothermal; Waste heat recovery and bottoming cycles. A general overview of low temperature power extraction techniques is presented and the differences between closed andopen Rankine power cycles are discussed in detail. Specific applications and technical areas of current research in OTEC along with a breakdown of plant operating conditions and a rough cost estimate illustrate how the use of low temperature power conversion technology can be cost effective.
    Original languageAmerican English
    Number of pages9
    StatePublished - 1985

    NREL Publication Number

    • NREL/TP-252-2693


    • geothermal
    • low temperature power extraction techniques
    • low temperature solar thermal
    • ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC)
    • solar ponds
    • waste heat recovery and bottoming cycles


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