Application of Pulse Spark Discharges for Scale Prevention and Continuous Filtration Methods in Coal-Fired Power Plant

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The overall objective of the present work was to develop a new scale-prevention technology by continuously precipitating and removing dissolved mineral ions (such as calcium and magnesium) in cooling water while the COC could be doubled from the present standard value of 3.5. The hypothesis of the present study was that if we could successfully precipitate and remove the excess calcium ions in cooling water, we could prevent condenser-tube fouling and at the same time double the COC. The approach in the study was to utilize pulse spark discharges directly in water to precipitate dissolved mineral ions in recirculating cooling ... continued below

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Cho, Young & Fridman, Alexander June 30, 2012.

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The overall objective of the present work was to develop a new scale-prevention technology by continuously precipitating and removing dissolved mineral ions (such as calcium and magnesium) in cooling water while the COC could be doubled from the present standard value of 3.5. The hypothesis of the present study was that if we could successfully precipitate and remove the excess calcium ions in cooling water, we could prevent condenser-tube fouling and at the same time double the COC. The approach in the study was to utilize pulse spark discharges directly in water to precipitate dissolved mineral ions in recirculating cooling water into relatively large suspended particles, which could be removed by a self-cleaning filter. The present study began with a basic scientific research to better understand the mechanism of pulse spark discharges in water and conducted a series of validation experiments using hard water in a laboratory cooling tower. Task 1 of the present work was to demonstrate if the spark discharge could precipitate the mineral ions in water. Task 2 was to demonstrate if the selfcleaning filter could continuously remove these precipitated calcium particles such that the blowdown could be eliminated or significantly reduced. Task 3 was to demonstrate if the scale could be prevented or minimized at condenser tubes with a COC of 8 or (almost) zero blowdown. In Task 1, we successfully completed the validation study that confirmed the precipitation of dissolved calcium ions in cooling water with the supporting data of calcium hardness over time as measured by a calcium ion probe. In Task 2, we confirmed through experimental tests that the self-cleaning filter could continuously remove precipitated calcium particles in a simulated laboratory cooling tower such that the blowdown could be eliminated or significantly reduced. In addition, chemical water analysis data were obtained which were used to confirm the COC calculation. In Task 3, we conducted a series of heat transfer fouling tests using a condenser heat exchanger in the laboratory cooling tower, from which we confirmed that the plasma water treatment technology could prevent or significantly mitigate mineral foulings in condenser tubes when compared with the no-treatment case. With the completion of the present work, a cooling water treatment technology using pulse spark discharges is currently ready for field-validation tests. The plasma water treatment technology is a true mechanical water softener with almost no maintenance, which continuously converts hard water to soft water spending a relatively small amount of energy. Such a mechanical water softener could find wide-spread applications to solve hard water problems both in industry and at home.

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  • Report No.: None
  • Grant Number: NT0005308
  • DOI: 10.2172/1080461 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 1080461
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc832522

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  • June 30, 2012

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • May 19, 2016, 9:45 a.m.

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  • Dec. 2, 2016, 8:14 p.m.

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Cho, Young & Fridman, Alexander. Application of Pulse Spark Discharges for Scale Prevention and Continuous Filtration Methods in Coal-Fired Power Plant, report, June 30, 2012; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc832522/: accessed September 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.