As steam is used in a process and gives up its heat energy, it becomes a liquid called condensate. This condensate is an exceptionally valuable resource that is typically designed to be recovered and used back into the boiler system.
A properly functioning deaerator is critical to the protection of steam boiler systems. Venting is important for the proper operation of a deaerator. Routine monitoring of venting can provide clues for identifying and solving potential problems. When deaerators have issues, they send out distress signals for all to see, but so often they are overlooked. The vent is rarely where it can be conveniently observed and in many cases it isn’t even visible. The vent’s physical layout can tell you a lot, but the venting can tell a story like no other.
Steam boiler systems provide energy to a variety of commercial, institutional, and industrial applications. Properly treated water is necessary for reliable and efficient operation of these systems. Water treatment control ranges for steam boilers can vary based upon the makeup water quality, boiler design, operating pressure, steam requirements, and steam quality/purity needs.
The term “cycles of concentration” is the basis for one of the most important concepts in industrial water treatment. The cycles of concentration measure the degree to which the solid impurities in the makeup water are concentrated in the recirculating water of an evaporative system. The higher this ratio, the more the impurities in the makeup water are being concentrated in the system water. This directly impacts the system’s water usage and treatment requirements along with the potential for waterside problems to occur, such as scale deposits and corrosion.
As water changes temperatures, its volume can expand or contract. This physical characteristic is important when designing closed recirculating hydronic systems without open sumps/tanks. These closed systems have specific volumes with pressure relief valves that will release water if the pressure set point is exceeded to avoid bursting pipes or damaging other equipment
Design and Operational Impacts
Theoretically, the maximum hardness-removal capacity of a water softener can be calculated from the grains of hardness of the water to be softened, the volume of resin, and the resin capacity expressed in grains/gallon. The actual capacity of a water softener may be impacted by many factors:
It’s that time of year when seasonal boilers should be prepared for the heating season. Before flipping that power switch to the “ON” position, however, the entire steam distribution and condensate return system needs to be surveyed to ensure it is ready for safe and successful operation.
By design, recirculating aerated water cascades through cooling towers to extract unwanted heat to the atmosphere. When foaming occurs, it can have negative impacts on both the cooling tower system and the surrounding environment. Foaming can not only confuse sensors and damage nearby equipment and car paint, it can also serve as a carrier for Legionella bacteria. Cooling water can foam due to a multitude of reasons. In some cases, it is even the result of a combination of factors. Some reasons cooling tower foaming may occur include:
Solid Water Treatment Programs
Cooling towers, steam boilers, and recirculating closed loop systems require effective water treatment chemistry for reliable and efficient operation. Liquid treatment chemicals are traditionally used because they are easier to manufacture and add to systems, but liquids aren’t always the best fit and present safety and environmental concerns that are often overlooked.
The Importance of Managing Biofilm
Where there is water, there is life. This includes cooling, chilled, process, and drinking water systems that facilities use every day. This life not only exists within the bulk water but sets up home on the surfaces of the water-related equipment, such as heat exchangers, piping, and basin walls. We call this deposit biofilm.