Posted By: Kalash Sinha

June 18, 2016


In a coal based power plant, coal is transported from coal mines to the power plant by railway in wagons or in a merry-go-round system. Coal is unloaded from the wagons to a moving underground conveyor belt. This coal from the mines is of no uniform size. So it is taken to the Crusher house and crushed to a size of 20mm. From the crusher house the coal is either stored in dead storage (generally 15 days coal supply) which serves as coal supply in case of coal supply bottleneck or to the live storage (8 hours coal supply) in the raw coal bunker in the boiler house. Coal from the raw coal bunker is supplied to the Coal Mills by a Raw Coal Feeder. The Coal Mills or Pulverizer, pulverizes the coal to 200 mesh size. The powdered coal from the coal mills is carried to the boiler in coal pipes by high pressure hot air. The pulverized coal air mixture is burnt in the boiler in the combustion zone. Generally in modern boilers tangential firing system is used i.e. the coal nozzles/ guns form tangent to a circle. The temperature in fire ball is of the order of 1300 deg.C. The boiler is a water tube boiler hanging from the top. Water is converted to steam in the boiler and steam is separated from water in the boiler drum. The saturated steam from the boiler drum is taken to the Low Temperature Superheater, Platen Superheater and Final Superheater respectively for superheating. The superheated steam from the final superheater is taken to the High Pressure Steam Turbine (HPT). In the HPT the steam pressure is utilized to rotate the turbine and the resultant is rotational energy. From the HPT the out coming steam is taken to the Reheater in the boiler to increase its temperature. After reheating, this steam is taken to the Intermediate Pressure Turbine (IPT) and then to the Low Pressure Turbine (LPT). The outlet of the LPT is sent to the condenser for condensing back to water by a cooling water system. This condensed water is collected in the Hotwell and is again sent to the boiler in a closed cycle. The rotational energy imparted to the turbine by high pressure steam is converted to electrical energy in the Generator. Coal based thermal power plant works on the principle of Modified Rankine Cycle.

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