The conference paper ‘Repowering: An option for refurbishment of old thermal power plants in Latin-American countries’ (in: Proceedings of ASME Turbo Expo 2010: Power for Land, Sea and Air GT2010 (June 14-18, 2010, Glasgow, UK). DOI: 10.1115/GT2010-23058) by Irrazabal Bohorquez et al. of the Universidade Federal de Itajubá (UNIFEI) in Brazil has several Sankey diagrams to visualize energy flows in repowered thermal power plants.

Flows are im MWe. The base situation (A) in the power plant built in the 1970ies is shown in this Sankey diagram:

And the situation in one of the six refurbishment scenarios (B to G) for the power plant:

In the refurbishment scenario gas turbines (GT) are being installed. Exhaust gas is recovered and used in a heat recovery steam generation (HRSG).

For each scenatio the cost for generated electricity is assessed as well as the CO2 emissions associated with energy generation.
Check out the paper @ Researchgate for more Sankey diagrams.

This presentation on ‘Water Management for Fossil Energy Systems’ by Susan M. Maley, Technology Manager for Crosscutting Research at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) / National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) gives an overview of the activities and research into ‘Current Activities in Water Management Research and Development’.

On page 9 it features these two Sankey digrams showing water usage in a 500 MW pulverized coal plant.

On the left the situation without CO2 capture, on the right with CO2 capture. Water withdrawal almost doubles (524 gal/MWh to 1049 gal/MWh) when implementing CO2 capture.

Mind that the left and the right Sankey diagram can not be compared directly as they use a different scaling factor.

Found this comparison of the efficiency of two power plant technologies on Russian design journal website kak.ru (via jvetrau’s bookmarks on visulize.us)

The Sankey diagram is in German and from the quality of the image I assume it is a scan from a printed publication. This seems to be a comparison of power plant technologies (‘Kondensationskraftwerk’ vs. ‘Heizkraftwerk’). The plant on the left has 63% losses and produces only electric energy, while the one on the right makes use of 88% (of the primary energy?) and produces both heat and electricity. A nice detail is the power plant silhouette sitting at the top.

If anybody has a clue where this vintage-style Sankey diagram has been originally published, please let me know.