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Pipat Juangjandee Thawan Sucharitakul Department of Mechanical Engineering Faculty of Engineering Chiang Mai University Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand Tel.: 0-9553-0632 Tel.: 0-5394-4147 E-mail: E-mail:

This research work is to study the performance of the cooling tower of 300 MW Mae Moh coal-fire power plant. Normally, this cooling tower’s main function is to cool heated circulating water from a condenser by exposing it to air. The cooled water is then circulated through the system by circulating water pumps. From this study, it was found that the cooling tower thermal efficiency is 51.63%, lower than designed and guarantee values, 70.97% and 70.97% respectively. The condition and age of cooling tower would tend to poor condition such as less hot water flow due to plugged spray nozzles, high turbidity, and poor hot water flow distribution. It is recommended to clean, clear, and eradicate the thallophytic plant in hot water basin, repair spray nozzles and analysis of the causes.

1. Introduction
In power plant system, there are so many equipments are used. One major equipment is a cooling tower, which found in most power plants. The cooling tower’s main function is to cool heated circulating water from a condenser by exposing it to air. Water that has been cooled by the air flowing through it is stored in a basin located below the cooling tower. The cooled water is then circulated through the system by circulating water pumps. In a cooling tower, heat is removed from water in two ways such as by convection and by evaporation. As cool air flows over the water, the movement of air causes heat to transfer from the water directly into the cooler air, this is called convection. In addition, when the heated water is exposed to air, some of the water evaporates, and this also helps cool the water. In Mae Moh power plant, there are many cooling towers have been used for along time ago. The cooling tower performance should be determined so the plant efficient can be improved by this result diagnosis. Therefore, the objective of this research work is to investigate the performance of the inducted-draft crossflow cooling tower.

Approach = Two − TWB


Cooling tower thermal efficiency can be calculated as

η CT =

Twi − Two Twi − TWB


& The convective heat transfer rate ( Q ) of hot water can be calculated as
& & Q = mw c p ,w (Twi − Two )

The humidity, Y of an air-water mixture is defined as mass of water vapor per mass of dry air.


pw M w R0T ( p − pw ) M a R0T


The humidity is thus given by

2. Theory
A performance of cooling tower is measured in term of its approach , how close temperature of cooled water comes comes to wet-bulb temperature of the ambient air, when water is cooled through the desired range. For given heat load, approach depends mainly on design wet-bulb, cooling range and type of tower selected. In this work, the cooling range and approach are defined as Cooling range = Twi − Two (1)


pw M w ( p − pw ) M a


Humid heat (s) is defined as

s = c p ,a + c pwY


The motor power of cooling tower fan can be calculated as

Pmtr = 3 IE cosθ


38 341.5 11. 7 5.16’ 2004 which shown in the form of average values. Figure 4 Wind velocity and inlet air temperature.0 23.00 50. The wet-bulb temperatures were 22.97% respectively.00 - & mw Twi Two TWB Cooling range Approach Pmtr Qw (x10-3) 9.00 20. The configuration of this type is shown on figure 1.1 39. Hot water temp.5 1245 417.49 23.0 4.00 30.00 20.5 11. designed data. Table 1 Power plant specification at rated condition.0 28. Categories Design Guarantee Test 100. dry bulb ( °C ) No.00 1. Performance Data In this work.0 23. and approach were 8.72–52. It was found that the cooling tower efficiency. so the cooling tower performance is lower than designed values. Actual approach values were higher than designed values.36 Wetbulb temp.63% is lower than the designed and guarantee values.52 °C and varied.00 22.0 Approach 4.00 80.0 9. Water rate Cooling range CT thermal efficiency Time Figure 3 Cooling tower performance.88 °C.00 25.00 5. Results and Discussion Figure 2 shows cooling tower performance data which recorded on Nov. the wind velocity at hot basin were found in low level.(Deg.0 28. (D eg .00 21. wet-bulb.C) 24.0 8.05 32.78-24.97 Figure 2 Cooling tower thermal efficiency.00 10.80-9.C ) & flo w (m 3/s) 50.00 45. 70.63 .97 70.00 E fficiency (% ) Ambient air temp.5 23. 80 70 CT efficiency (%) 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 Series Design Guarantee Test 51.0 Cold water temperature ( °C ) Cooling range 11.16’ 2004.00 60.00 90.00 3. 0.71 %.97% and 70.63 70. the cooling tower of 300 MW Mae Moh power plant. cooling range were 8.57 8.5 1245 417.00 70.9-3.5 Temperature of inlet air.00 1 2 3 4 5 6 Wind vel.00 35. 25.1 39. Vax η CT 70.00 2. and guarantee data.96 1018.00 40.00 40. 4.1 39. From figure 4.00 Wet-bulb temp.00 23.36 °C. Recooled water temp.03 2.00 :00 :30 :00 :30 :00 :30 :00 11 1 1 1 2 1 2 13 1 3 1 4 The designed technical specification of this cooling tower is shown in table 1. Wet bulb temp. 51. Categories Values Heat load of cooling tower (kW) 417000 Water rate (m3/s) 9. wet bulb ( °C ) 27.16’ 2004.00 30. Table 2 Collected data of the tested cooling tower on Nov.56 42.00 20.6 m/s.97 70. of cooling tower cell per unit 9 Cooling tower age (year) 16 The cooling tower performance test data were recorded on Nov. Cooling tower performance as shown on figure 3 were found in fair level such as cooling tower thermal efficiency were 49.3.53 9.0 4. induced-draft cross-flow type was selected for investigating.74–9. unit 10. the designed data and guarantee data as illustrated in Table 2.5 Temperature of inlet air. Figure 1 Inducted-draft cross-flow cooling tower.00 Wind velocity (m/s) 4.00 15. T em p .97 51.0 Hot water temperature ( °C ) 28.

00 Series Design Guarantee Test 341. In figure 8.63%. 7. then operators reduced water flow by closing some cooling water inlet valves.1 9. The less water flow rate is one of many factors in low cooling tower performance. 5. the water flow rate of designed and guarantee values were 9. it’s recommended to repair as soon as possible.00 150.03 416. so that air capacity can be improved because they still have margin.00 400. modification and repair.1 8. 10 (m3/s) 9. Conclusion Design Guarantee Test Figure 7 Water rate of cooling tower.245. All distribution valves have to be readjusted. Figure 6 Heat load of cooling tower.4 Water flow should be analyzed and readjusted because it less than the designed value quite big.00 250. the cooling tower fan power values at testing condition were lower than designed values. Figure 7. and eradicate the thallophytic plant in hot water basin.5 5 Series Figure 9 A thallophytic plant growing on wood long immersed in water in hot water basin. it is recommended to clean. Reference . clear. heat load values of tested cooling tower were lower than designed values.97% and 70. The hot water flow distribution is in poor condition. Some water spray nozzles at the hot water basin were clogged. Wter ra a te 6.00 100. 450.00 1. so that this cooling tower can be received more heat load. lower than the designed and guaranteed values.00 1.018.00 Heat load (MW) 350. 5.94 Figure 8 Hot water basin flood over overflow pipes.56 5.5 8 7. Figure 9.245. From figure 5. 9.5 6 5.1 m3/s respectively but in testing conditions was 8. 5.94 416. From figure 6. The condition and age of cooling tower would tend to dictate that research. 5.38 Design Guarantee Test Series Figure 5 Cooling tower fan power. A thallophytic plant growing on wood long immersed in water were found in the hot water basin of cooling tower.56 m3/s.1 It was found that the cooling tower thermal efficiency was 51.00 300. Acknowledgement The authors gratefully acknowledge the support provided by the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand. these plant effecting the water flow.97% respectively.1400 Total fan power (kW) 1200 1000 800 600 400 200 0 1.00 50.1 an 9.3 Some nozzles at hot water basin are damaged and plugged.00 200.5 9 8. so much water flood over the overflow pipes were occurred on hot water basin. 70.5 7 6.2 High turbidity was occurred on hot water basin of cooling tower.

USA. The Marley cooling tower company. 8.F. 29 molecular weight of water. Plant energy system. 1042. 4th edition. D. Shires.. McGrawHill. CRC Press.L. T. 18 mass flow rate (kg/s) mass flow rate of water (kg/s) power (kW) motor power (kW) total pressure (Pa) partial pressure of air (Pa) partial pressure of water vapor in the mixture (Pa) heat transfer rate (W) heat load of cooling tower (kW) universal gas constant. S. Nomenclature A CT cp cp. and Bott. (1967). Process Heat Transfer. [4] Hensley.w cpw D E H h ha hi ho hw I k L Ma Mw area (m2) cooling tower specific heat at constant pressure (J/kg K) specific heat of air at constant pressure (J/kg K) specific heat of water at constant pressure (J/kg K) specific heat of water vapor at constant pressure (J/kg K) diameter (m) voltage (V) tower height (m) heat transfer coefficient (W/m2 K) enthalpy of dry air (J/kg) heat transfer coefficient at inlet (W/m2 K) heat transfer coefficient at outlet (W/m2 K) enthalpy of water vapor (J/kg) current (A) thermal conductivity (W/m K) length (m) molecular weight of air. G. USA.P.314 (kJ/kmol K) temperature (°C) wet bulb temperature (°C) temperature of water inlet (°C) temperature of water outlet (°C) overall heat transfer coefficient (W/m2K) velocity (m/s) air velocity. ρa µ air stream density (kg/m3) Dynamic viscosity (Pas) 8.P. (1982). [2] Incropera. John Wiley & Sons Inc.R. G. J. [3] Elonka. Kansas.a cp. and Dewitt. (1994). USA..[1] Hewitt. (2002). Introduction to heat transfer. Cooling tower fundamentals. F. horizontal direction (m/s) humidity angle ( °) density (kg/m3) & m & mw P Pmtr p pa pw Q Qw R0 T TWB Twi Two U V Vax Y θ ρ . Boca Raton.