Jun 29, 2012
Steam cycle solution introduced to SABack
Engineering|Africa|Flow|GE|GE Intelligent Platforms|Safety|Screens|System|Systems|Water|Africa|South Africa|Energy|Equipment|Flow|Large Systems|Screen|Steam Cycle Solution|Systems|Bill Pezalla|Power|Water|Combustion Control Algorithms|DCS Technology|Drum-level Control Algorithms|Thermal Unit Combustion Compensation Algorithms
© Reuse this
The steam cycle solution combines proven and comprehensive capabilities, providing coordinated control of the boiler, boiler auxiliaries and turbine auxiliaries, along with preconfigured, customisable control strategies and screens, he explains.
The system has a set of unique preconfigured templates with complete control strategies and screens, which can easily be tailored to a specific plant’s needs.
It also contains libraries representing control strategies, control elements and visualisation elements, allowing the user to manually instance and tie objects in the libraries together to form complete, customised appli- cations, using simple user interfaces and without the need to reprogram the solution.
GE believes this technology could make a difference to how power plants in South Africa are run and is currently negotiating with a number of possible customers, he says.
The solution can be installed on new plants but, at this stage, the company aims to enable plants with older boilers to make use of this modern technology.
“The DCS technology can be used on any size plant, which will further increase demand, as it enables small and medium-sized boilers to make use of technology that could previously only be used on large systems,” Pezalla adds.
GE’s engineers have worked with boilers for many years and have extensive knowledge of different types of power plants and their equipment. This has allowed the company to simplify the control of boilers by enabling operators to drag and drop the technology on a computer screen for easy installation.
“Our DCS isn’t new, but the fact that we reduced the logic down to enable it to be rapidly installed is a new concept,” he says.
Power plants are running for longer with shorter maintenance outages and the advantage of GE Intelligent Platforms’ DCS is that it is an open system that works with any type of boiler and can be implemented during a short maintenance outage, Pezalla explains.
The speed of system implementation results in increased uptime, which, in turn, increases production.
By leveraging the system’s combustion control algorithms, a high level of precision and accuracy can be maintained, which leads to more efficient boiler operations, he notes.
The solution also allows real-time control to ensure the uniform loading of fuel sources and greater uniformity in air flow, he adds.
Meanwhile, operators can easily measure and analyse combustion and emissions, as the solution delivers a holistic view of the efficiency metrics and provides actionable insight to assist in decisions to increase the levels of energy production while reducing fuel consumption.
By using this system, fuel use can be reduced by 3% to 5% and system implementation time can be reduced by 50 % to 80%, Pezalla points out.
Further, the system’s drum-level control algorithms automatically respond to varying steam loads and pressure variations, which assists in ensuring that boilers operate within the correct safety parameters.
Boiler safety is also increased through the careful tuning and precise control of all steps of the process, such as purging the furnace before fuel firing and automated burner sequencing, including pilot and main flame light-offs as well as by avoiding repeat purging and reinitiation of the start-up sequence.
Meanwhile, the GE solution ensures smooth and consistent steam production with fossil fuels and biomass fuels by handling variations in the quality and moisture content of fuels with its advanced British thermal unit combustion compensation algorithms, which reduce carbon monoxide emissions.
Consistent steam production is also beneficial, as inconsistent steam can cause fan blades to fatigue and break, he says.
Boiler damage is prevented by maintaining water levels to avoid low water conditions, which could damage the boiler or lead to an explosion, says Pezalla.
Edited by: Chanel de Bruyn© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other Top Projects News
Recent Research Reports
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Road and Rail 2014 (PDF Report)
This six-page brief covers key developments in the road and rail industries over the past 12 months, including details of South Africa’s road and rail network and prospects for both sectors.
This Week's Magazine
South African State-owned defence industrial group Denel has announced its fourth consecutive year of profits. The group's results for the financial year 2013/2014 were recently announced at its head office in Centurion, south of Pretoria. Revenues grew by 17%, net...
There is little opportunity for JSE-listed infrastructure company Group Five to grow shareholder value in the domestic market, says CEO Mike Upton. He says value can still be found in the private sector, in the renewable and industrial power sector, as well as in...
The National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa) has announced the event dates of the 2015 Johannesburg International Motor Show (JIMS). The event will take place from October 14 to October 25, 2015, at the Johannesburg Expo Centre, Nasrec.
UK engineering support services provider Babcock is set to deliver the largest order of global truck manufacturer DAF’s truck tractors in Southern Africa to bulk carrier road-based logistics company Ngululu Bulk Carriers (NBC), with 133 trucks to be delivered in...
Digital radio communications in the African local government space can open up the world, but have many challenges to overcome, notes integration and migration of legacy radio communications infrastructure with digital mobile radio company Emcom Wireless head of...