After 17 non-stop days, Optimum Dry Ice Blasting have now completed blast cleaning of our first, gas-side, HRSG fin and tubes for the energy industry.
We believe we are only the second UK company to now complete this very tricky and logistically challenging process of dry ice blasting HRSG fins and tubes and I would like to thank all my staff for the hard work they have put in to achieve a very successful blast clean.
For those who don’t know, a HRSG (Heat Recovery Steam Generator) is part of a power train that is used to drive a steam turbine. They are made up from bundles of tubes and each tube array is made up of a series of fins. It is these fins which become encased in fouling which results in high back pressures and lost output.
Not many companies in the UK now have the skill set and experience to carry out HRSG dry ice blasting, in fact, our client traditionally uses a USA based company to carry out the work. After lengthy consultation and stress testing, it was decided that Optimum was the preferred option and was approved. The energy sector is a massive potential customer base for dry ice blasting in the UK (and not just for Optimum Dry Ice Blasting either) and we believe that the more companies that can work inside this huge industry, the better the profile of dry ice blasting will have. That can only be good for all of us.
The level of planning for this HRSG blast clean was immense and secondary only to our Hydrocarbon ‘cracker’ dry ice blast. For this particular HRSG the tubes were staggered at 3.8cm and 5.08cm and downstream of the SCR injection point. The main problem is creating a cleaning lane to the core of the bundle. This is achieved by using alignment/spread bars to gently ‘open’ the lane to the core. This procedure isn’t for the faint hearted and getting it wrong would be a catastrophe.
I’d like to report that we didn’t get it wrong and the job has been completed well within the time allocated and bang on budget.
Again, well done to all concerned. The client has written us a wonderful testimonial praising our professional attitude, health and safety procedures and our methodical ‘can do’ approach to a very tricky operation.
By Ian Reynolds