Gas power plants, which supply electricity to meet peak demands, must work reliably and come on line rapidly, especially in the cold times of the year.
Infrared emitters from Heraeus Noblelight, under test, heating fleece filters, so that they can operate without icing up. Copyright Heraeus Noblelight 2010
Fitting of the infrared de-icing system in the Trianel Gas Power Plant in Hamm. Copyright Heraeus Noblelight 2010
For combustion, gas turbines need air which must be free from dust and other particles and, consequently, this is always pre-filtered. Cold and moist intake air in the winter months can easily lead to icing up of the filters. This means that less air is is passed through the filters so that the turbines must be choked or switched off – just when they are most needed.
At Trianel in Hamm, infrared systems from Heraeus Noblelight complement the de-icing protection in a modern combined cycle power plant (GuD). In just two weeks in May, 24 infrared modules, including controls, were installed and commissioned.
Modern combined cycle (gas and steam turbine) power plants generate electricity at a relatively high efficiency of around 60%, significantly higher than conventional power plants at around 40%. Moreover, they can be brought on line very quickly and so are used for handling medium and peak electricity load demands.
Electricity consumption is not steady but demand is in peaks and troughs. To meet this, fast acting power plants must be used. These can provide high power output within minutes. Gas power points offer such capability and they rely on being able to take in cleaned air. If the in-line filters become iced up, this can lead to power plant shut down. An efficient de-icing system, which above all must operate quickly and reliably, has to guarantee the availability of the power plant even in the cold winter months.
Trianel GmbH is a co-operative of 47 public utilities and operates a combined cycle power plant with two block unit power stations in Hamm. A coal-fired power station is under construction in Luenen and a further one is planned for Krefeld. An offshore wind farm is also underway in front of the island of Borkum. The combined cycle plant in Hamm is already several years old. The experience of the last two relatively hard winters caused Trianel to consider enhancing its existing anti-icing systems. Any solution had to be as easy as possible to retrofit and very responsive.
Thomas Kleinwaechter, manager of technical management and maintenance in Hamm, met with Heraeus Noblelight to investigate the suitability of electrical infrared systems for this application.As with most gas power plants, the plant in Hamm used the “waste heat” from electricity generation for filter de-icing. This hot air is blown onto the pocket filters, made of fleecy material. However, there can be local cold and hot zones, especially when the hot air is not distributed sufficiently.
In contrast, infrared radiation has significant benefits. Energy is distributed without contact and generates heat within the material itself. In addition, infrared heat is rapidly available and heating is more energy-efficient than many conventional methods.
“I am convinced that infrared systems can heat the filters comprehensively and evenly without significantly impairing the cross-sectional flow of the intake air,” says Thomas Kleinwaechter. The power station operators also made the point that the de-icing enhancement system was a turnkey system which was supplied complete. “We were faced with a real challenge,” says Michael Lyhs, project manager at Heraeus Noblelight, “in the end, there was a window of just three weeks for the total electrical and mechanical installation and this work had to be carried out at heights of 11 to 25 metres.”
Altogether, surface areas of 8.8 x 4m were each fitted with 24 medium wave infrared emitters, with a total rated power of 236 kW. Every three of the 2.20m long emitters are mounted in a frame and these modules can be easily switched on and off and controlled by a switchboard or from the main control room. “The co-operation and collaboration between the power station staff and Heraeus worked so well that the system was up and running in just two weeks!” says Michael Lyhs, delightedly, “I am convinced that the de-icing system will meet the challenges of next winter perfectly.”
Heraeus Noblelight GmbH with its headquarters in Hanau and with subsidiaries in the USA, Great Britain, France, China, Australia and Puerto Rico, is one of the technology- and market-leaders in the production of specialist light sources. In 2009, Heraeus Noblelight had an annual turnover of 71.6 Million € and employed 707 people worldwide. The organisation develops, manufactures and markets infrared and ultraviolet emitters for applications in industrial manufacture, environmental protection, medicine and cosmetics, research, development and analytical measurement techniques.
TrianelThe liberalised energy market offers public utilities a wide range of opportunities. As the largest European Public Utility Co-operative with 47 members in Germany and the rest of Europe, Trianel has maximised this potential by means of innovative concepts along the total value and supply chain. At the same time, the network of utilities has made possible what would not have been possible for the individual utilities alone – from energy generation in highly efficient power stations through energy trading in our own trading floor up to the development of a broad palette of procurement and marketing solutions.
Trianel also sees future fields of activity for utilities in the areas of re-municipalisation and the use of electric-powered vehicles and is working to develop appropriate solutions with its partners. With its various activities, Trianel represents over 5 million customers.
Heraeus Noblelight GmbH with its headquarters in Hanau and with subsidiaries in the USA, Great Britain, France, China, Australia and Puerto Rico, is one of the technology and market leaders in the production of specialty light sources. In 2009, Heraeus Noblelight had an annual turnover of 71.6 Million € and employed 707 people worldwide. The organisation develops, manufactures and markets infrared and ultraviolet emitters for applications in industrial manufacture, environmental protection, medicine and cosmetics, research, development and analytical laboratories.
Heraeus, the precious metals and technology group headquartered in Hanau, Germany, is a global, private company with over 155 years of tradition. Our businesses include precious metals, sensors, biomaterials and medical products, dental products, quartz glass, and specialty light sources. With product revenues of € 2.6 billion and precious metal trading revenues of € 13.6 billion, as well as more than 12,300 employees in over 110 subsidiaries worldwide, Heraeus holds a leading position in its global markets.
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