Steam/Power Generation and Cooling - The Application
A major part of water used in industry is used for cooling, cleaning as well as for steam and power generation.
One thing all applications have in common: Through leakages within heat exchangers the product may affect the water circuit or vice versa. Then, the plant operators are confronted with several consequences:
From an economical point of view, this should be prevented.
Water can be treated to pure and ultrapure water. Depending on the application, it is then characterized by containing from low up to no traces of organic matter. A low degree of contamination is especially important in water-steam cycles. Even the smallest impurities may cause organic compounds to be oxidized to aggressive acids under pressure and temperature within the boiler. These acidic substances results in an increased formation of foam and a higher risk of corrosion and thus in process disruption.
The quality of cooling water depends on the cooling system used (once-through cooling, open/ closed recirculating cooling). If surface water (rivers, lakes) is used, the water inlet as well as the water outlet must be monitored for contaminants.
Regardless of the quality, it is important to ensure water quality required to protect plant equipment, including pipes, tubes, turbines, and boilers. Minimize silica levels to prevent turbine blade erosion or monitor Dissolved Oxygen (DO) to prevent corrosion in boilers and steam turbines.