What is condensate?
After the steam has transferred heat, it condenses into condensate. This condensate must be removed continuously to ensure a continuous technological process in the industrial plant. Condensate is not a waste stream but the purest form of water (distilled water) in an industrial plant.
One measure to improve energy efficiency in the plant is to recover this condensate back to the boiler. When the condensate is recovered, it will reduce the amount of water supplied to the furnace, save fuel, chemicals and water treatment costs, and reduce the amount of wastewater entering the waste system.
Condensate has a significant economic value because:
– Condensate is hotter than process water and therefore has significant thermal energy.
– Condensate does not need any chemical water treatment.
If collected, the condensate does not need to be discharged and the wastewater stream does not need to be cooled to any thermal limitations of the wastewater.
Condensate recovery is considered good when it exceeds 80%. Depending on the original plant design and plant size, condensate recovery can be significantly lower and this becomes a key area of steam system optimization. Sometimes industrial process limitations such as the potential for condensate contamination in a heat exchanger can dictate that condensate recovery should not be possible.
Main parts of condensate recovery system:
The main components of a condensate recovery system include:
– Steam traps.
– Condensate pipes and fittings.
– Steam expansion tank.
– Lift stations.
The steam trap is an integral part of a condensate recovery system.
Benefits of condensate recovery:
Condensate is inherently clean water, so it will help reduce blowdown, thereby helping to reduce energy lost due to boiler blowdown. A significant amount of fuel is saved because condensate is inherently very hot (55°C – 107°C) so less energy is needed to convert it to steam than using normal temperature feed water (20°C – 107°C). C – 25°C).
– Reduce water supply, save money on water.
– Reduce water treatment costs.
– Reduced energy costs because hot condensate requires less energy to convert it to steam.
The condensate can be directed to the boiler or mixed with the boiler feed water. However, directing the water directly into the furnace is sometimes not beneficial if the condensate is at risk of contamination. Where the distance between the boiler and the steam source is too far, the recovery of condensate will not bring economic benefits.
How to reduce operating costs with condensate recovery?
Reduce operating costs by recovering the maximum amount of condensate to the boiler by the following measures:
– If there is no condensate recovery system, the plant needs to estimate the cost of the system and install it if it is economically profitable.
– Repair the steam distribution system and condensate recovery system if there is a leak.
– Insulate the condensate system to conserve heat and avoid burns.
Above is information related to boiler condensate recovery. If you need more detailed advice, please contact KS Boiler for a free consultation!
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