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January, 2001

Technical Bulletin

Importance of Good Boiler Feedwater Treatment


HRSG End Users


Understanding Boiler Feedwater Water Issues


Why should we be concerned about boiler feedwater?

Maintaining good feedwater is an important and fundamental aspect of any steam turbine power plant. A plant that maintains good
feedwater achieves the following three benefits:

Help to ensure maximum life out of its boilers, steam turbines, condensers, and pumps.
Reduce maintenance expenses.
Maintain optimal thermal performance

The purpose of this newsletter is to provide a summary of power plant feedwater quality issues so that designers and operators can be
better informed.
Results of Poor Water Treatment
In the ideal situation, water would be feed to a boiler free of any impurities. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Water clean up is
always required. The following items are the most problematic to boilers and steam turbines:
Calcium (Ca) scale Calcium forms with sulfates (SO4 ) and other compounds to form calcium sulfate, calcium bicarbonate, calcium
carbonate, calcium chloride, and calcium nitrate. During evaporation, these chemicals adhere to boiler tube walls forming scale. Its
formation increases with the rate of evaporation so these deposits will be heaviest where the gas temperatures are highest. Scale is a
nonconductor of heat which leads to a decreased heat transfer of the boiler tubes, and can result in tube failure due to higher tube
metal temperatures. Buildup of scale also clogs piping systems and can cause control valves and safety valves to stick.
Magnesium (Mg) scale Same issues as with calcium.
Silica (SiO2) Silica can form scale at pressures below 600 psig. Above 600 psig, silica starts to volatize, passing over with steam to
potentially form deposits on the steam turbine diaphragms and blades. These deposits change the steam path components profiles
resulting in energy losses. The degree of loss depends upon the amount of the deposits, their thickness and their degree of roughness.
For example, if the nozzle area of the first stage flow path was reduced by 10%, the output of the steam turbine would be
approximately 3% less. A similar loss could occur if the gas turbine received steam for power augmentation purposes.
Sodium (Na) Sodium can combine with hydroxide ions creating sodium hydroxide (caustic). Highly stressed areas of boiler piping
and steam turbines can be attacked by sodium hydroxide and cause stress-corrosion cracks to occur. This was a problem in older
boiler with riveted drums because of stresses and crevices in the areas of rivets and seams. While less prevalent today, rolled tube
ends are still vulnerable areas of attack as well as welded connections.
Chloride (Cl) Chlorides of calcium, magnesium, and sodium, and other metals are normally found in natural water supplies. All of
these chlorides are very soluble in water and therefore, can carry over with steam to the steam turbine. Chlorides are frequently found
in turbine deposits and will cause corrosion of austenitic (300 series) stainless steel and pitting of 12 Cr steel. Corrosion resistant
materials protect themselves by forming a protective oxide layer on their surface. These oxides are better known by their generic
name ceramic. All ceramics will pit if exposed to chlorides. If the metal piece is under tensile stress either because of operation or
Vogt Power International Inc.

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4000 Dupont Circle, Suite 400 Louisville, Kentucky 40207 502/899-4500 Fax: 502/899-4690
Sapulpa Manufacturing Operations: 2110 N. Industrial Drive Sapulpa, Oklahoma 74066 918/227-4202 Fax: 918/227-4207

January, 2001

Technical Bulletin
residual stress left during manufacturing, the pits formed by chlorides attacking the passivated layer will deepen even more. Since the
piece is under tensile stress, cracking will occur in the stressed portions. Usually there will be more than one crack present causing
the pattern to resemble a spiders web. The most common source of chloride contamination is from condenser leakage.
Iron (Fe) High iron is not found in raw water but high concentrations can come from rusted piping and exfoliation of boiler tubes.
Iron is found in condensate return in a particle form as it does not dissolve in water. The detrimental aspect of iron is called steam
turbine solid particle erosion, which causes significant erosion of steam turbine steam path components.
Oil Oil is an excellent heat insulator, and adherence of oil on tube surfaces exposed to high temperatures can cause overheating and
tube damage.
Oxygen (O2) Oxygen is found in feedwater and its partial pressure is relatively high so it will requires a near saturation temperature
to disassociate itself from water. Oxygen in combination with water will attack iron and cause corrosion. The reaction occurs in two
Ferrous ion

2OHHydroxyl ion



Ferrous hydroxide

4Fe(OH)2 +


The ferric hydroxide is highly insoluble and precipitates on heated surfaces. The precipitate is called magnetite or rust. The closer
the water is to the saturation temperature, the more corrosion will occur.
Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Carbon dioxide can react with water to form carbonic acid (H2CO3). Carbonic acid will cause corrosion in
team and return lines. Carbon dioxide can originate from condenser air leakage or bicarbonate (HCO3) alkalinity in the feedwater.
pH The pH value of water is a measure of its alkalinity or acidity and has a direct bearing on the corrosive properties. All water
contains alkaline (hydroxyl, OH) ions and hydrogen (H) ions. The product of the concentrations is always approximately 10-14. The
pH value of the water is the log of the reciprocal of the H ion value. If the water is neutral, the OH and H ion concentrations are each
10-7. A pH below 7 indicates acidity; over 7 designates an alkaline condition. Low pH in local areas is the second most common
cause of corrosion in mild steel boilers Above roughly 400, mild steel corrosion results in the formation of magnetite, a tight
adherent that acts as a barrier between boiler water and steel. The corrosion reaction stops after a uniform magnetite layer is formed .
Rapid general corrosion can ensue if this protective film is disrupted, so water chemistry must be carefully controlled to maintain the
film. An acidic condition can destroy the magnetite film; therefore, boiler water is maintained in the alkaline range of a pH of 9.0 to
Foaming Foaming is the formation of bubbles or froth on the water surface. It is caused by a high amount of total and suspended
solids. Foam will fill the free surface area of a separating device increasing local velocities and promoting a serious carryover of
boiler water.
Priming Priming is a violent and spasmodic discharge of water with steam into the steam space. Slugs of water are thrown over
with the steam causing damage to the steam turbine.

Vogt Power International Inc.

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4000 Dupont Circle, Suite 400 Louisville, Kentucky 40207 502/899-4500 Fax: 502/899-4690
Sapulpa Manufacturing Operations: 2110 N. Industrial Drive Sapulpa, Oklahoma 74066 918/227-4202 Fax: 918/227-4207

January, 2001

Technical Bulletin
Carryover When boiler water solids are carried over into the moisture mixed with steam even though there is no indication of
foaming or priming, this is considered as carryover. Carryover can be the result of high steam flow which overloads the dryers
(separators). The dryers work by sudden changes in stem velocity so that foreign particles are thrown out by centrifugal force.
Raw Water Cleaning
Raw water can come from a variety of sources, lakes, rivers, and wells for example. Each source of water will have its own
constituents and therefore, its own requirements for cleanup. These cleanup requirements should be specified by experts in this field
of work.
Raw water from reservoirs, lakes, rivers, and wells can have varying characteristics as provided below:
Silica (SiO2)
Iron (Fe)
Calcium (Ca)
Magnesium (Mg)
Sodium (Na)
Potassium (K)
Carbonate (CO3)
Bicarbonate (HCO3)
Sulfate (SO4)
Chloride (Cl)
Fluoride (F)
Nitrate (NO3)
Dissolved solids
Total hardness as CaCO3
Non carbonate hardness
Specific conductance

0.4 to 39 ppm
0.0 to 2.1 ppm
1.7 to 79 ppm
0.4 to 33 ppm
1.4 to 147 ppm
0.4 to 4 ppm
1 to 4 ppm
10 to 328 ppm
0.8 to 560 ppm
2.6 to 195 ppm
0.0 to 2.5 ppm
0.0 to 4.0 ppm
23 to 1380 ppm
6 to 316 ppm
0 to 197 ppm
29.5 to 1040 micromhos at 25 C
0 to 15
5.8 to 8.4

In general, raw water is cleaned via four processes. They are summarized below:

Aerification This process removes undesirable gases such as carbon dioxide and hydrogen sulfide by mixing water with air.
The mixing adds oxygen to the water while removing the carbon dioxide and hydrogen sulfide. Increasing the temperature, the
areation time and the surface area of water improves the removal of gases.


Coagulation This is the process of adding chemicals to reduce coarse suspended solids, silt, turbidity, and colloids in a clarifier.
The impurities will settle out of solution with the added chemicals. Some chemicals used for coagulation are filter alum, sodium
aluminate, copperas, ferrisul, activated silica, and various organic compounds.


Filtration Filters remove coarse suspended matter and removes floc or sludge from coagulation or process softening systems.
Beds of gravel or coarse anthracite are common materials used for the filter beds. Specially made precoated filters can be used to
remove oil and reduce color.


Softening There are several methods to remove calcium, magnesium, silica, and silt (softening). They are summarized as
Lime soda softening Calcium carbonate (lime) is added to feedwater to precipitate the calcium bicarbonate to
calcium carbonate and magnesium salts to magnesium hydroxide. Sodium carbonate (soda ash) is added to reach

Vogt Power International Inc.

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4000 Dupont Circle, Suite 400 Louisville, Kentucky 40207 502/899-4500 Fax: 502/899-4690
Sapulpa Manufacturing Operations: 2110 N. Industrial Drive Sapulpa, Oklahoma 74066 918/227-4202 Fax: 918/227-4207

January, 2001

Technical Bulletin
with calcium chloride and calcium sulfate to corm calcium carbonate. This process is more efficient at hot
temperatures. After the lime-soda process, the residual hardness will be approximately 17 to 25 ppm.
Hot-process phosphate softening Phosphate is added to remove calcium and magnesium. This process results in
precipitated tricalcium phosphate and magnesium hydroxide. The chemical reactions occur above 212 F and will
reduce hardness to nearly zero.
Zeolite softening Zeolites are any in a group of crystalline mineral compounds whose framework of atoms forms
microscopic tunnels and rooms. The internal structure of zeolites makes them useful as filters and catalysts. In
water softening processes, zeolites are used to exchange calcium and magnesium ions with sodium in the zeolite.
The calcium and magnesium are passed to waste and the zeolite is regenerated by passing a sodium chloride (salt)
solution through the softner.
Demineralization Demineralizers are used to remove ionized mineral salts. Calcium, magnesium, and sodium
cations are removed in a hydrogen cation exchanger by sulfonic, carboxylic, and phenolic hydroxyl compounds.
Anions of bicarbonates, sulfates, chloride, and soluble silica are removed by amino or quaternary nitrogen.
Reverse Osmosis - Reverse osmosis is defined as the passage of water from a more concentrated solution to a less
concentrated solution through a semipermeable membrane under pressure. The pressure is required to reverse the
natural process of osmosis by overcoming the osmotic pressure. Simply, osmotic pressure can be looked at as being
directly related to concentration so the higher the salt concentration in the feed, the higher the osmotic pressure.
This osmotic pressure is real. For example, seawater, which contains approximately 3.5%, or 35,000 mg/l salt, the
majority of which is sodium chloride (NaCl), has an osmotic pressure of 410 psi (28.3 bar). Before desalting can
occur, an RO system must be pressurized to a minimum of 410 psi (28.3 bar) to overcome the osmotic pressure
inherent in the solution. Two-stage RO is defined as running two RO systems in series with the product (permeate)
of the first acting as the feed to the second RO. Staged or series operation is typically done when a single-stage RO
system does not produce the required quality of product water. Another justification for two-stage RO is where the
additional expenses of operating the second RO system is lower than alternative forms of polishing the first-stage
RO permeate to reach a higher quality of final product water.
Boiler Water Control
Items to control in the boiler water are oxygen and dissolved solids.

Each of these are controlled in the following manner:

Oxygen Oxygen will be found in steam condenser condensate as well has in makeup water. It is most commonly removed via one
of two system arrangements. A common method is the use of a vacuum condenser. A vacuum is created in the condenser by steam
jet air ejectors pumps prevents the water from absorbing oxygen because the vacuum is lower that the oxygens partial pressure in
water. The other method is to use an integral deaerator arrangement. For this arrangement a deaerator is located atop the low
pressure drum and water from the HRSG feedwater heater is sent to the integral deaerator where it mixes with saturated steam from
the low pressure drum thereby removing the oxygen.
Dissolved Solids During the evaporation process, most solids stay in the water section of the drum while steam is sent to the
superheater. As the solids increase in water, they are removed by sending a small portion (typically 1 to 2% of the feedwater flow
rate) though a drum blowdown pipe to the blowdown tank. This water is most often released to a drain. The separation ratio of solids
in steam vs. drum water depend upon pressure. Separation values provided by the ABMA are listed as follows:

Vogt Power International Inc.

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4000 Dupont Circle, Suite 400 Louisville, Kentucky 40207 502/899-4500 Fax: 502/899-4690
Sapulpa Manufacturing Operations: 2110 N. Industrial Drive Sapulpa, Oklahoma 74066 918/227-4202 Fax: 918/227-4207

January, 2001

Technical Bulletin
ppm as CaCO3
0 - 300
301 - 450
451 - 600
601 - 750
751 - 900
901 - 1000
1001 - 1800
1801 2350
2351 2600
2601 - 2900




20% of Actual Boiler Water Solids

For TDS < 100 ppm, the total alkalinity is dictated by the boiler water treatment
Does not include vaporous silica carryover
The ABMA defines FCO as Fractional Carryover.

Marketing Manager

Vogt Power International Inc.

Jeff Daiber
Director of Aftermarket

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4000 Dupont Circle, Suite 400 Louisville, Kentucky 40207 502/899-4500 Fax: 502/899-4690
Sapulpa Manufacturing Operations: 2110 N. Industrial Drive Sapulpa, Oklahoma 74066 918/227-4202 Fax: 918/227-4207

Industrial boilers

Vaduz, March 2013

Hoval System Solution (P&ID)

steam boiler plant

Hoval System Solution (P&ID)

steam boiler plant

Equipment of steam boiler plants

Main equipment for steam boiler plant

Steam boiler



water treatment plant

condensate station

Equipment of steam boiler plants

for high plant efficieny

feedwater tank with


high pressure
condensate tank

steam boiler

ionic exchanger

reverse osmosis with

permeat tank

low pressure
condensate tank

Equipment of steam boiler plants

Water treatment station (softener)
B) Desaltination rate refering to water treatment plant
Ionic exchanger

Partial / Complete demineralisation Reverse osmosis





Requiered space




Operating facilities




Boiler desalination




Treatment plant drain




Parameter: raw-water hardnes, condensate quantity, quality of steam

Energy circle of boilers

Industrial steam systems

Hoval equipment installed:
Picture above:
Boiler type: 1 x Hoval THSD-I 170/160 E (17 to/h steam)
Burner: Saacke
Fuel: natural gas (H)
Picture below:
Boiler type: Hoval 6 x THW-I 210/200 HTE (20 MW)
Burner: Dreizler
Fuel: natural gas (H) and light fuel oil (diesel)

Paper production, Petula, DE

Hoval Steam boilers advantages at a glance:

High efficency rate up to 90% even without

Complete systems including boilers, feedwater tanks,
deaerator, condensate tanks, blow down tanks, etc. from
one hand.
Easy to install, easy to operate, easy to maintain.

Severnoye Domodedovo, Moscow, RU

Cost effectiveness

Cost-efficient solution due to low investment costs

Best effectiveness due to built in
water cooled fin tube wall at flame tube rear wall
dimpled tubes at THD-U boiler series
Power saving and high efficiency
due to smooth heating surfaces
boiler design calculated according to actual rules

Lowest emissions
Conservation of energy protection of the environment

Environment friendly due to lowest noxious emission

Low CO2 emissions due to minimal consumption
Outstanding low emissions values due to power adjustment
(modulation) of LowNOx burners
Low fuel consumption due to special calculated heat transfer
areas resulting in high boiler efficiency

Perfect solution

Large range of applications due to flexible combination options

Space-saving due to compact design
Simple installation due to high flexibility in positioning

Easy to use
Simple handling

Easy to use due to intelligent design details

Convenient and accessible remote maintenance by using
TopTronic online (THW-INTE)

Large boiler front door which guarantees easy access for

cleaning of boiler and burner service
Boiler door hinged no special lifting or support tools
No fire proof concrete at back wall of boiler

Hoval Industrial boiler

product portfolio
All hot water and Steam boilers are also available with Economizer !
Hot water boilers:
Hot water boiler :
High temperature hot water boiler:


Steam boilers:
3-pass reversed flow principle




Hoval / March 2013

(Feedwater tank pressure less)

(Feedwater tank with deaerator)
(Condensate tank)
(blow down tank)
Hoval Industrial boilers

Three-pass - flame tube - fire tube boiler

Hot water boiler

Hot water boiler max. 10 bar(g), 120
High temperature hot water boiler max. 16 bar(g), 204,3
Steam boiler, for saturated steam
Design press. max. 16 bar(g) and 204,3C

Hot water boiler THW-I NTE

1500-20000 kW
6 and 10 bar
STB 120C
(Safety temperature

Hot water boiler THW-I NTE

High temperature - hot water boiler THW-I HTE

1000-21000 kW
10, 13 and 16 bar
STB 204,3C
(Safety temperature limiter)

High temperature - hot water boiler THW-I HTE

Flame tube flue gas tube - hotwater boiler

Steam boiler THD-U / THSD-I E

500 - 5000 kg/h
10, 13 and 16 bar (MAWP)
2000 - 22000 kg/h
10, 13 and 16 bar (MAWP)

Steam boiler THD-U / THSD-I E

Flame tube flue gas tube - steam boiler

References - Solutions


THD - U with SPW - D

(Luxor Jolie-Ville - Egypt)



(Contitech Changshu China)

Hoval / March 2013

Hoval Industrial boilers

Solution - Jolie Ville

Jolie Ville Hotel / Luxor Egypt

(former Mvenpick Jolie Ville)
Founded 1991 in Egypt
Owner buys the brand Jolie Ville from Mvenpick and starts expansion
Today cooperation with the German Hotel chain Maritim

Solution - Jolie Ville

Technical area (steam

and heating boilers
split system)

Solution - Jolie Ville: Requirements

Efficient steam system for expansion of Jolie Ville

Hotel in Luxor Kings Island by replacement and
extension of existing old boiler plant

Very tight time schedule: Finishing of the complete

project in short time (Guests have already booked!)
Proofed system
Quality - Safety

Solution - Jolie Ville: Description

Steam system for most modern laundry
3000 kg/h steam with operating pressure 8,5 bar

100% stand-by steam boiler

Feed water tank for boiler water supply and pre-heating
Water softener and chemical dosing station for boiler
feed water preparation
Several steam pressure reducing stations for supply of
different pressure needs of laundry area

Solution - Jolie Ville: Steam boiler

2 x THD-U 3000 11bar

Solution - Jolie Ville: Steam boiler

Steam header and steam reducing stations

Solution - Continental

Contitech Changshu / China

Company founded 1871 in Germany in year 2010 the plant in

Changshu was built.
Actually Contitech has more the 27000 employes worldwide

Solution - Continental

Technical area
(steam boilers)

Solution Continental: Requirements

High efficient steam system for new production facility

in Changshu / China
2 boilers with possibility for extension with 3rd boiler
Proofed and China certified boilers
Local support by supplier technicians
Quality - Safety

Solution Continental: Description

Steam system description
2 x 8000 kg/h steam with operating pressure 20,5 bar
2nd boiler operated by cascade control due to steam system needs
Feed water tank with deaerator for boiler water supply and pre-heating
Steam accumulator for covering extremely high steam demand during short

Water softener (osmosis) and chemical dosing station for boiler feed water
Several steam pressure reducing stations for supply of different pressure
needs of production area

PLC- system for operation and remote maintenance

Solution Continental: Steam boiler

2 x THSD-I 90/80 E - C (8000 kg/h) 24,5 bar

Solution Continental: Economiser unit

Solution Continental: Switchboard

Solution Continental:
Switch board - touch panels
Electrical control panel mit Siemens PLC Simatic S7

Touch panel (HMI) for general

plant indication and operation

Touch panel (HMI) for simple

boiler indication and operation

Feedwater tank + Purge tank

Feedwater tank with deaerator

Steam distributors

Observe good condensate

collection and drain!

Plant pictures

Plant pictures

Plant pictures

Plant pictures

Plant pictures

Steam boiler explosion force

(blasting agent)
(boiler pressure)

boiler water content (t)

Technically advanced heating and

indoor climate solutions
Thank you for your attention.