The Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC) has been proved a promising technique to exploit waste heat from Internal Combustion Engines (ICEs). Waste heat recovery systems have usually been designed based on engine rated working conditions, while engines often operate under part load conditions. Hence, it is quite important to analyze the off-design performance of ORC systems under different engine loads. This paper presents an off-design Medium Cycle/Organic Rankine Cycle (MC/ORC) system model by interconnecting the component models, which allows the prediction of system off-design behavior. The sliding pressure control method is applied to balance the variation of system parameters and evaporating pressure is chosen as the operational variable. The effect of operational variable and engine load on system performance is analyzed from the aspects of energy and exergy. The results show that with the drop of engine load, the MC/ORC system can always effectively recover waste heat, whereas the maximum net power output, thermal efficiency and exergy efficiency decrease linearly. Considering the contributions of components to total exergy destruction, the proportions of the gas-oil exchanger and turbine increase, while the proportions of the evaporator and condenser decrease with the drop of engine load.
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