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HIGH TEMPERATURE BOILER TUBE FAILURE

By
Mr. Patil Nirmal Bharat.
Guided by
Prof .S V Pawar.

ABSTRACT:The boiler tubes are operated continuously at high temperature and pressure. During operation,
scales are formed in boiler tube due to tube geometries, flue gas and steam temperature. The remaining wall thickness
decreases due to the formation of scale which eventually causes failure of the boiler tubes. The increase of heat transfer rate
across the wall caused the oxide scale thickness to grow more rapidly than normal condition. It was also observed that due to
formation of scale the thermal conductivity in the boiler tubes was affected and the remaining life of boiler tubes was
decreased and accelerated creep damage. Steam temperature was influencing most the wall thinning and creep damage in
comparison to the flue gas temperature. The interactive effects of both the parameters were also prominent. Moreover, the
optimum operating condition was identified in order to maximizing the remnant life of the tubes while minimizing the creep
rupture damage. In recent year, with the rapid development of supercritical units also brings some serious problems , for
example, due to the oxide skin exfoliation of boiler tube caused many boiler tube explosion accidents. Aiming at this
problems, the paper first introduced commonly used steel and its resistance to steam oxidation and the metal oxide skin
formation and exfoliation mechanism is studied. These findings have a certain reference value for the power plant safe and
economy operation. This presentation deals with the probable causes of failure and also suggest the remedial action to
prevent similar repetitive failure in future.

2.INTRODUCTION:-

Boiler tubes in service operate under high temperatures and iso stress conditions. A material operating at
high temperature and constant stress is subjected to creep deformation. Boiler tube failure due to corrosion, scale formation,
and material degradations, are measure problems in thermal power plants. Unexpected boiler tube failure is the major factor
causing unreliability in utility boilers. Boiler tube failure is the major cause of unscheduled shutdowns in the coal fired boiler
plants, which is responsible for production loss. The boiler are energy conversion system where heat energy is used to convert
water into high pressure steam, which can further be used to drive a turbine for electric power generation or to run plant and
machineries in a process or manufacturing industry. One of the most complex, critical, and vulnerable systems in fossil power
generation plants is the boiler pressure components. Boiler pressure component failures have historically contributed to the
highest percentage of lost availability. Failures have been related to:

Poor original design,

Fabrication practices,

Fuel changes,

Operation,

Maintenance and

cycle chemistry.

the
typical characterstics
of failures
boiler tube
2.1few
Prominent
reasons for tube
:- failure are summarised below: Poor water quality:- With increases in operating pressure, feed water quality becomes even more critical.
Coal quality:- Using a different type of coal for emission or economic reasons has adversely affected the capability, operability,
and reliability of boiler and boiler auxiliaries

NOx emission.:- Deep staging combustion for NOx reduction has produced serious water wall fire corrosion for high
sulphur-coal firing, especially in supercritical units.
Age-ing.:- A large percentage of existing fossil-fired units are exceeding design life without plans for retirement. These
vintage units are carrying major loads in power generation.

Cycling operation:- Many base-load-designed boilers have been placed into cycling duty, which has a major impact on

the boiler reliability as indicated by occurrences of serious corrosion fatigue in water-touched circuitries, economizer inlet
header shocking, thick-wall header damages, and others.
Overheating:- superheater and reheater tubes of a power plant boiler normally operate at a temperature 30 to 50 degree
Celsius higher than the temperature of the steam inside the tube. Although high heat flux causes high tube wall temperature,
deposits have a great effect on tube wall temperature and therefore on overheating