Helping Power Plants Manage the Challenges of Seasonal Heat

When temperature extremities threaten production, temporary equipment providers can help.

Running an electric generating power plant as efficiently as possible is the key to maintaining profit margins. That means managing seasonal heat issues during peak season to avoid having to derate or a forced outage. Temporary equipment can help in any number of ways.

Specialty Power and HVAC equipment providers such as United Rentals provide supplemental cooling equipment for a variety of plant processes and when combined with engineering expertise, develop customized process solutions to help plants maximum megawatt output. Here are just a few examples.

Inlet and discharge water cooling. As the ambient temperature rises, the intake water temperatures from a lake, river, reservoir, or cooling tower systems also rises resulting in elevating operating temperatures.  Temporary thermodynamic solutions as offered by United Rentals may reduce the water temperatures and in turn, reduce the stress on the plant cooling systems.  

Oil cooling. A high ambient temperature can affect the performance of lube oil coolers. Custom-engineered temporary cooling systems can mitigate the challenges of elevated turbine lube oil temperatures and in turn, reduce the stress on the plant cooling systems. 

Fouled heat exchangers. Operating best practices suggest that electric generating plants inspectand clean their heat transfer equipment prior to peak season starts, yet fouling may still occur. If a heat exchanger fouls and the plant cannot afford to take an unscheduled outage, supplemental heat transfer equipment is employed while permanent equipment service needs are attended to.

When the temperature outside turns up the stress level for plant managers, tailored HVAC solutions, complete with around-the-clock monitoring, can ease the pressure.


Marianne Wait is an editor and writer who creates content for Fortune 500 brands. 

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