Wednesday, March 3, 2010
All in a Day's Work: New Tube Leak in Bottom Ash
Unit 2 has a tube leak in Bottom Ash. This is at the bottom of the furnace, underneath the 'floor'. The tubes form a sloped floor in the bottom of the furnace, and the heaviest ash falls down the walls, slides down the sloped floor and falls into a trough of water. From there it is extracted and pumped out to some decant ponds where the ash falls out of the slurry and the water is reclaimed and used to transport more ash.
This is a picture of Unit 1 Boiler furnace cavity, looking down from the 13th floor. The holes that you see on the sides of the boiler are burners, and when the boiler is operating, a jet of fire about 3 ft in diameter and 30 feet long shoot out of the burners. Our tube leak is down below the scaffolding that is being assembled in this picture.
You probably won't see a clip like this very often. It looks like fire shooting out, but it is just hot pressurized water flashing to steam, and illuminated by the fire above.