Power Plant Engineering by P. K. Nag: A Comprehensive Guide for Students and Practitioners
Power plant engineering is a branch of engineering that deals with the design, operation and maintenance of power plants that generate electricity from various sources such as coal, gas, nuclear, hydro, solar and wind. Power plant engineering requires a thorough understanding of the principles of thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, heat transfer, combustion, electrical engineering and control systems.
One of the most popular and widely used textbooks on power plant engineering is Power Plant Engineering by P. K. Nag, published by McGraw Hill Education. This book covers all the aspects of power plant engineering in a clear, concise and comprehensive manner. The book has four parts: Part I introduces the basics of power generation and plant performance; Part II covers steam power plants and their components; Part III deals with gas turbine, diesel engine and combined cycle power plants; and Part IV discusses non-conventional power generation and environmental issues.
The book is written for undergraduate and postgraduate students of mechanical engineering, as well as practicing engineers and managers in the power sector. The book provides numerous examples, solved problems, review questions and objective type questions to enhance the learning process. The book also includes appendices on important topics such as steam tables, gas tables, psychrometric charts and unit conversions.
Power Plant Engineering by P. K. Nag is a must-have book for anyone who wants to learn about the fundamentals and applications of power plant engineering. The book is available in both print and digital formats from various online platforms[^1^] [^2^].Some of the topics that are covered in power plant engineering are:
Gas power plant (Brayton cycle): This type of power plant uses a gas turbine to convert the heat energy of a fuel into mechanical work and then into electrical power. The gas turbine consists of a compressor, a combustor and a turbine. The compressor increases the pressure and temperature of the air before it enters the combustor, where it is mixed with fuel and ignited. The hot and high-pressure gas then expands through the turbine, producing work and reducing the pressure and temperature of the gas. The turbine drives a generator to produce electricity. Some of the advantages of gas power plants are high efficiency, low emissions, quick start-up and flexibility[^1^].
Vapour power cycle (Rankine cycle): This type of power plant uses a steam turbine to convert the heat energy of a fuel into mechanical work and then into electrical power. The steam turbine consists of a boiler, a turbine, a condenser and a pump. The boiler produces steam by heating water with fuel. The steam then expands through the turbine, producing work and reducing the pressure and temperature of the steam. The turbine drives a generator to produce electricity. The steam then enters the condenser, where it is cooled and condensed back into water. The water is then pumped back to the boiler to complete the cycle. Some of the advantages of vapour power plants are high reliability, low maintenance and long life[^1^].
Nozzles and diffusers: These are devices that are used to change the velocity, pressure and temperature of a fluid. A nozzle is a device that converts the pressure energy of a fluid into kinetic energy by accelerating it to a higher velocity. A diffuser is a device that converts the kinetic energy of a fluid into pressure energy by decelerating it to a lower velocity. Nozzles and diffusers are used in various applications such as jet engines, rockets, wind tunnels, turbines, compressors and ejectors[^1^].
Compressors: These are devices that are used to increase the pressure and temperature of a fluid by doing work on it. Compressors can be classified into two types: positive displacement compressors and dynamic compressors. Positive displacement compressors use pistons, diaphragms or screws to reduce the volume of a fluid and increase its pressure. Dynamic compressors use rotating blades or impellers to impart kinetic energy to a fluid and increase its pressure. Compressors are used in various applications such as refrigeration, air conditioning, gas transmission, pneumatic tools and power generation[^1^].
Steam turbines: These are devices that are used to convert the heat energy of steam into mechanical work and then into electrical power. Steam turbines can be classified into two types: impulse turbines and reaction turbines. Impulse turbines use nozzles to accelerate steam to a high velocity and then direct it onto blades that are fixed on a rotor. The change in momentum of the steam causes a torque on the rotor, which drives a generator to produce electricity. Reaction turbines use blades that are fixed on both the rotor and the stator. The steam expands through the blades on both sides, causing a pressure difference that results in a torque on the rotor, which drives a generator to produce electricity. Steam turbines are used in various applications such as power generation, marine propulsion, industrial processes and cogeneration[^1^]. aa16f39245