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Measuring Boiler Tube Temperature

Thursday, September 30, 2021 | Derek Stuart
Categories : Industry
Boilers are used in many industrial applications ranging from power generation to municipal waste incineration as well as district heating. 

Fluidized Bed BoilerKnowing the temperature of the steam tubes in the heat exchanger is important for both efficiency and reliability. A low temperature reduces the thermodynamic efficiency of the boiler, but excessive temperature can lead to premature failure because of factors such as embrittlement and creep. Fouling with ash and slag will insulate the tubes from the hot combustion gases and reduce the effectiveness of heat transfer.

AMETEK Land’s mid-wave infrared borescope (MWIR-B) thermal imager operates at a wavelength of 3.9 µm. Typical furnace gases are transparent at this wavelength, so the imager can see through flames that would otherwise obscure the view. The long-wavelength makes it much less sensitive to dust particles than a camera using visible light. The MWIR-B uses borescope optics to view a large part of the furnace with only a small penetration through the boiler wall. The borescope configuration also keeps the sensitive electronics outside the hot and dirty process environment. An air purge and water cooling protect the delicate objective lens from the hot and corrosive process environment.

The image above was taken using an MWIR-B looking down from the top of a fluidized bed boiler. Regions of interest have been defined along the right- and left-hand walls, and the image processing software calculates the maximum and minimum temperature in each region.

In conclusion, a borescope imager operating in the mid-infrared region at 3.9 µm can give valuable insights into the tube conditions, allowing the operator to optimize efficiency whilst avoiding unplanned outages caused by tube ruptures.

Click here to learn more about AMETEK Land's MWIR-Borescope (MWIR-B)


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