When chemistry alarms go off in your steam power plant, how do you know if it’s just a nuisance alarm or a real chemical event?
The fact is, most of the time, you don’t. For many plant operators, too many alarms can be worse than none at all. And that confusion can cost you time and money during a real event.
Troubleshooting alarms with manual processes can take hours or even days to find the issue – costing up to $100,000 for every hour your operation is down, or millions if permanent damage occurs. Alarm-related problems cost U.S. industry more than $20 billion a year, driving many plants to reduce alarms and meet the International Society of Automation (ISA) standard of 1 alarm every 10 minutes.Read More
Plants and facilities of all kinds use sample coolers to cool a sample from a process stream. Cooling samples as part of your steam and water sampling system is essential to maintaining safety and the representativeness of the sample.
For example, if a sample in a power plant is too hot to handle, the operator might throttle the flow to unacceptably low levels, which means the sample is no longer representative or acceptable.
Another example comes from Hydrocarbon processing or Process Analytics. Cooling the process to handle the sample is necessary. If you take a grab sample of a certain hydrocarbon whether it be of a liquid or a gas, the safest way is to handle the sample at below 140F. This protects the operator when handling hot samples that need to be physically taken to the lab safely for analysis.Read More
The power industry has changed drastically, and the ability to start up quickly and generate reliably and economically are no longer luxuries, but requirements. That puts more pressure than ever on your steam and water sampling system. Here’s what you need to know to minimize the adverse effects of cycling on chemistry results and streamline busy start up times. This information was originally presented by John Powalisz at the 37th Annual Electric Utility Chemistry Workshop, held June 6-8 in Champaign, Illinois.
Steam and water sampling is a key component of a successful chemistry program in cycling power plants. It helps protect both equipment and plant personnel, while ensuring maximum output, helping identify and predict failures, and helping start up the unit faster.Read More
How can an automatic flow controller streamline busy startup times? See how one utility eliminated redundant tasks and reduced man hours with our newest flow controller. This project was originally presented by Jason Thomas at the 37th Annual Electric Utility Chemistry Workshop, held June 6-8 in Champaign, Illinois.
A power plant in Florida frequently cycles, requiring plant personnel to manually adjust valves during already busy startup times. Plant operators wanted to eliminate these redundant tasks to reduce the burden on staff and more easily maintain EPRI-recommended sample velocity.Read More
What does it take to design a practical and reliable steam sampling system? Find out what you need to know to practically implement steam sampling guidelines in your process environment. This information was originally presented by Jeff McKinney at the ISA Analysis Division Symposium, held April 23-27 in Pasadena, California.
Steam sampling is sometimes viewed as a necessary evil in a process plant. However, the absence of steam due to a boiler shutdown makes for a bad day at a refinery, petrochemical or specialty chemical plant. But one size doesn’t fit all, and a number of variables must be considered to design and implement a practical, reliable steam sampling system.Read More
Since a steam and water analysis system (SWAS) is critical to any power plant, any variation from optimal operation and consistent steam and water sampling can lead to problems that cause added time and expense.
The burning question is: Do you trust your process analytics?Read More
Cation resin can last a few days or several months, and it can be difficult to predict the lifespan even in ideal conditions. So how do you know if your resin is still functional at any given time? What does it take to prolong the life of resin – and how do you know when it’s time to refill or regenerate it? It all starts with understanding the cation resin lifespan and the many factors that affect it. Read on so you’ll never get caught with depleted resin again.Read More
A large parabolic trough solar power plant in the southwest part of the U.S. uses two 125 megawatt (net) steam turbine generators to generate more than 250 megawatts of energy. Since the power plant uses solar energy to create steam that drives a turbine, the plant faces many of the same concerns as a conventional fossil fueled power plant.
Therefore, it is critical to safely monitor and measure the quality of the steam and water used when generating steam. For this reason, a conventional steam and water analysis system (SWAS) was part of the original construction.Read More
Analysis of process steam and condensate are important aspects of any chemical processing or refining operation. Impurities in these systems such as silica, sodium, and chloride, or deviations from target pH values, can wreak havoc on a plant’s operations. Online analyses of parameters such as pH and cation conductivity are commonly performed to monitor the condition of process water and steam.
In order to achieve accurate analysis, EPRI, ASTM and ASME recommend cooling of water samples to 77°F (25°C) to ensure consistent, accurate analysis. Unfortunately, cooling water temperatures in process plants commonly exceed 100°F (38°C). While this is acceptable to provide rough cooling, it is insufficient to properly cool samples for online pH, cation conductivity or similar analyzers.Read More
A steam and water analysis system (SWAS) conditions, analyzes and monitors the chemical properties of the steam and water used to generate electricity. A well-designed SWAS maximizes efficiency and output while also protecting plant assets, operators and the environment.Read More