Boiler fuel dominance is changing

Cochran boilers operate in more than 100 countries worldwide

WEE CHIEFTAN Cochran boilers operate in more than 100 countries worldwide

6th June 2014

By: Donna Slater

Features Deputy Editor and Chief Photographer


Font size: - +

The popularity of coal-fired boilers is slowly losing momentum to the rise in cleaner burning fuels such as natural gas, according to heat generation company Steam Generation Africa.

Steam Generation Africa MD John Rundle says gas firing is quickly gaining ground, as boiler clients realise that its impact on the environment is less, and operating efficiencies are higher, coupled with ever-increasing availability of natural gas both in the pipeline network and portable compressed gas.

Gas firing is a cleaner burning fuel, and compared to coal has no ash, resulting in less materials handling equipment to remove ash, saving on boiler house personnel costs. General maintenance costs on gas-fired boilers are considerably less than that of coal boilers, together with yearly and 36-monthly inspections.

Further, costs are saved in fuel-handling equipment, as gas is fed directly into the burner without the need of hoppers, coal bunkers and stokers that are required for coal-fired boilers.

Rundle states that the single most important part of any boiler is the burner and its combustion control system. “The future running costs of boilers depend on the choice of burner, and boiler design is worthless without the most modern burner that guarantees enhanced combustion performance.”

Steam Generation Africa is the exclusive Gauteng reseller of the UK-manufactured Autoflame Combustion Management System, which improves the air and fuel ratios in burners, enhancing their performance and efficiency.

“Clients with older-generation burners will register increased fuel efficiency of between 5% and 8%, depending on burner use,” Rundle says, adding that the management system has also been fitted successfully to locally manufactured Cyclotherm boilers.

“The patented three-parameter exhaust-gas trim system of the Autoflame system manages environmental impact, thereby reducing carbon footprint and accurately managing the combustion process,” he adds.

The company recently entered into a cooperative partnership with UK-based energy solutions company Cochran Group to sell, install and supply spare parts for their Wee Chieftan, Thermax single and twin furnaces, as well as their Borderer steam and hot-water boilers, waste-heat boilers and economisers in sub- Saharan Africa.

Rundle notes that Cochran boilers were well known in South Africa in the 1990s, when the company was owned by Rolls-Royce. However, the company withdrew from South Africa, resulting in several older-generation Cochran boilers still being used in South Africa.

Steam Generation Africa chose the Scottish brand, owing to it being “at the forefront of industry-leading innovation manufacture, robust design of boilers and construction that leads to extended operational life”, for the last 130 years.

Cochran manufactures top quality process standards and procedures that are third-party audited to internationally recognised ISO 9001, BS2790, EN12953 and ASME codes, all of which are recognised in South Africa.

The Cochran three-pass, wetback boiler is renowned for its reliability, durability and robust design, he says. Its standard working pressure is 1 000 kPa, with designs of up to 2 500 kPa available and steam outputs of 24 000 kg/h available.

“The Cochran boiler and economiser system will operate to efficiencies of up to 96%,” states Rundle.

Edited by Megan van Wyngaardt
Creamer Media Contributing Editor Online




Multotec, recognised industry leaders in metallurgy and process engineering help mining houses across the world process minerals more efficiently,...


FlameBlock is a proudly South African company that engineers, manufactures and supplies fire intumescent and retardant products to the fire...


Latest Multimedia

sponsored by

Photo of Martin Creamer
On-The-Air (23/02/2024)
23rd February 2024 By: Martin Creamer
Magazine round up | 23 February 2024
Magazine round up | 23 February 2024
23rd February 2024

Option 1 (equivalent of R125 a month):

Receive a weekly copy of Creamer Media's Engineering News & Mining Weekly magazine
(print copy for those in South Africa and e-magazine for those outside of South Africa)
Receive daily email newsletters
Access to full search results
Access archive of magazine back copies
Access to Projects in Progress
Access to ONE Research Report of your choice in PDF format

Option 2 (equivalent of R375 a month):

All benefits from Option 1
Access to Creamer Media's Research Channel Africa for ALL Research Reports, in PDF format, on various industrial and mining sectors including Electricity; Water; Energy Transition; Hydrogen; Roads, Rail and Ports; Coal; Gold; Platinum; Battery Metals; etc.

Already a subscriber?

Forgotten your password?







sq:0.376 0.431s - 174pq - 2rq
Subscribe Now