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Intelligent flame analysis for an optimized combustion
Stephan Peper Senior Consultant Combustion Optimization ABB UTD/PGA Kallstadter Street 1 Mannheim, Germany Dirk Schmidt Sales Manager Powitec Intelligent Technologies Im Teelbruch 134b Essen, Germany
Combustion Optimization, power plant, camera, image processing, neural net
One of the primary challenges in the area of process control is to ensure that many competing optimization goals are accomplished at the same time and be considered in time. This paper describes a successful approach through the use of an advanced pattern recognition technology and intelligent optimization tool modeling combustion processes more precisely and optimizing them based on a holistic view.
Within the combustion process to date camera systems are mainly applied for visualization purposes only . This video technology provides the operator with online information of the flame behavior, but is limited to the operator’s capability to interpret the complex visual information and to react on it in an appropriate way. For this reason, in recent years intelligent flame analysis systems have been developed to extract additional flame information characterizing the combustion in far better way [2,3]. Furthermore, this information, available in a digital format, allows an intelligent processing in conjunction with the other measurements of the plant. The efficient use of this large set of information is crucial for a successful and continuous combustion optimization. The proposed system uses a computer-aided significance analysis where, as a first step, the parameters dominating the process are identified. These parameters are the primary sources of information for the optimization software that is structured in such a way that it automatically adapts to constantly changing process conditions (adaptivity). The optimizer can recognize, among other things, the effects that wear and tear have on machines and plant components, or changes in the fuel used in the process, and can readapt its optimization strategy as necessary.
volatile matter.g. For this reason the proper balance of fuel and air is crucial for minimal operational and maintenance cost. reduce emissions. (II) which optimize the combustion based on this information automatically. sewage sludge). ammonia. etc. VIS. In the following a system will be explained – starting with the flame sensor . model building. However. It obtains this information through the analysis of individual flames by digital image processing. shown in Figure 1. or NIR) can be selected. The fuel flow to the pulverizers is often very coarsely given by feeder speed. results of implemented systems will be presented showing the potentials in saving operational costs for coal. The combustion of a wider bandwidth can considerably increase the flexibility in this process of procurement. However. The system should • • • • • • equalize air/fuel ratio and flow. and navigation for optimizing the combustion process. The information of the fuel flow broken down to each burner in general is not directly available. in case of a pulverized coal boiler such balance is hard to find. allow alternative fuel (e. This highly rapid optical system has been designed especially for applications in furnaces. higher carbon in ash. High excess air increases the energy due to a higher volume of hot flue gas leaving the stack. Varying coal quality is gaining more importance since coal is obtained worldwide for varying prices. . the coal type very much influences the combustion. whereas the fuel flow from the pulverizer to the burner is only calculated under the assumption of an equal split of the coal input between the corresponding burner pipes. low excess air will possibly result in higher secondary NOx. rigid endoscope with two optical outputs. the self-consumption of the related fans will be increased and also contribute to a higher spending of fuel. energy (self consumption). REQUIREMENTS The efficient combustion is primarily defined by the air to fuel ratio and the proper distribution of the air within the furnace zones . etc. and problems regarding water wall corrosion. Special bands of wavelengths (such as UV. Finally. Attributes such as calorific value. In contrary. have a great impact on the process. and guarantee safe water wall atmosphere at different loads and adapting to changing plant conditions. measures have to be applied. allow a wider fuel bandwidth. Additionally. sulfur content.fulfilling such requirements . stabilize flame and combustion.Menu Search Print The paper describes the hierarchy of the system and the different steps of data collection. Thus an exact air/fuel control is not possible. uses an air-cooled. FLAME SENSOR The sensor. hard grove index. The endoscope can be used in any combustion medium. For these reasons. (I) from which the above information can be derived and.
The CCD camera obtains 3 video images.g. . This information can be used to determine the flame temperatures in a sufficient quality. An image frame of up to 1280 x 1280 pixel can be obtained and be processed at a speed of 10 Mpixel/sec. green and blue light (RGB) 25 times per second. transmitting radiation data of the flame directly to a field computer for flow condition analysis. such as flow conditions (i. to the particle load. At the same time. This correlates to the turbulence of the flow field. to a system computer. the second camera system (CMOS camera) determines flame characteristics highly spatially and temporally discretized. fluctuation). parallel with the video pictures. Adjustments like fuel and air variations are reproducible attained. are analysed by a frequency analysis. which is typically located in the control room. Flame characteristics. The criteria or characteristics are transmitted. This camera system delivers the live color video images for the control room. individually for red. The temporal and spatial behavior of fluctuations in flame intensities within the burner field is drawn upon as a measure of turbulence.Menu Search Print The first optical output is used to monitor a defined area of a single flame through a CCD video camera. and to the speed inside the single flame. The second optical output is used for a CMOS camera. A B C flow conditions A optical device with beam splitter B video camera C CMOS camera pattern recognition video signal FIG 1 – FLAME SENSOR Each sensor is assigned to its own field computer analyzing the flame data and extracting image criteria.
Up to 25 different features will be generated.Menu Search Print TABLE 1 – TECHNICAL DATA OF THE FLAME SENSOR DESCRIPTION DIAMETER (PROTECTION TUBE OF ENDOSCOPE) LENGTH (PROTECTION TUBE OF ENDOSCOPE) EXTENSION MODULE ENVIRONMENTAL TEMPERATUR. MANTLING MATERIAL AIR CONSUMPTION PRESSURE COOLING AND PURGING AIR MEASURE 1. and coal fineness will be determined internally. . intensity fluctuation. HEAD ENVIRONMENTAL TEMPERATUR. which enables the operator to get an online feedback of burner adjustments also on comfortable thermography tools.7 inches (43 mm) 31.and water free FLAME CHARACTERISTICS The visual information will be transferred to an image processing system.dust.8 inches (300 mm) < 2370 F (1300 C) < 750 F (400 C) Stainless steel 30 m3 / h > 4 bar Oil.5 inches (800 mm) 11. implicit information additionally is extracted. One example for the use of this thermography module is shown in Figure 2. Parallel to the characteristic extraction the system includes a visualization module. A high degree of spatial and temporal discretization provided by the camera system guarantees high information content of the received data. light frequencies. Here flame characteristics highly correlating with • • • • • temperatures. coal distribution. Beside these explicit characteristics.
Via the cursor measuring points. or areas can be defined according to locations of interest. The temperature differences in the observed area are continuously displayed on a time scale. The characteristics are acquired via extraction of so-called moments by means of digital image processing (high temporal and spatial resolution). The temperature distribution in this region can thus be displayed for a period of hours or days. the change in the flame shape is easily discernible from ’POLYLINE’ 0 and 1. which the evaluation software is able to understand. lines. In these locations calculations are performed to determine MIN/MAX or MEAN values over specific time intervals. In the example above.Menu Search Print FIG 2 – THERMOGRAPHY MODULE ‘PIT INDICATOR' The different temperatures are color-coded. The moments are image information. Two freely positionable polygon lines (straight lines or curves) can be saved as chronological representations. which describe the flame image with great detail and reproducibility and in a manner. Rapid process characteristics are required for online prognosis and as a basis for an automatic control with the system own optimization software based on neural nets. Limits can be set and alarms are issued in case the temperatures exceed or fall short of these limits. A special feature is the ’POLYLINE’-display. .
The signal ‘NOx before DENOX’ is corrected regarding time delay. The good correlation is given with the advantage. and to model the relationship between the measured variables or camera-based characteristics and the resulting controlled variables. since the combination (subsets) of characteristics often indicate highest optimization potentials. neuronal characteristics form the basis to predict NOx and other production results. Crucial for this analysis is the joint processing of the visual and conventional plant characteristics.Menu Search Print The raw data is further processed to characteristics specially adapted to the navigation software. . FIG 3 – NOX CHARACTERISTICS SIGNIFICANCE ANALYSIS The main objectives of the significance analysis are to • • identify those process parameters which have largest impact on a specific optimization variable. Besides geometrical and statistical characteristics. Here no explicit physical characteristics but “raw signals” are shown and correlated with NOx concentration before SCR. An example is given in Figure 3. Thus they can influence the NOx control much quicker than the (extractive) measurement can do. that these raw signals are immediately available at combustion.
the potential for improving the combustion conditions can be assessed.139 0.118 0.087 1 REG_KL_KALU_M30 0.107 0. the result of the significance analysis – the ranking – is shown in TABLE 2: In contrast to the redundant channels (rank 4 . and excluded channels.110 0.106 0. Based on the results of the weighting procedure.141 0.108 0. Consequently.101 As an example.136 0.110 0. whereas the other channels only provide redundant or no information. The data records are imaged via neural networks and are used for weighting the process parameters in accordance with their relevance to a specific optimization objective.116 3 MOMENT B02Z1 0.105 0. A possible ranking is shown in the following table. According to a given optimization goal only the top four channels are most relevant.105 0. the analysis only uses relevant data records of a period of several months.099 0. the significant channels are suitable as inputs for the .137 0.141 0.096 0.116 0.137 0.113 0.120 0.121 redundant channels 4 CO2 S2 5 SELU_KL_2_BR32 6 CO2 S1 7 TERT_LU BR31 8 MOMENT B01Z1 9 AIR 1 10 TERT_LU BR32 11 CO S2 12 CO S1 13 MOMENT R01Z1 14 AXIAL 15 RADIAL 16 NOX_V_DENOX 17 MOMENT B03Z1 excluded channels 18 MOMENT B01Z2 19 MOMENT R05Z1 date: 23/05/01 incremental error 0.Menu Search Print In order to minimize the required computation work and to avoid ambiguity. The characteristics or channels are split into three groups: significant.17). redundant. in the neural net model of the boiler behavior only the top four will be included.119 0.135 0. TABLE 2 – RESULTS OF A SIGNIFICANCE ANALYSIS X PIT-ANALYZER channel ranking of significance analysis datafile: power 146 significant channels rank channel single error 0 PLA_BD_ZUT30 0.140 0.110 0. the “ranking”.131 2 MOMENT R02Z1 0.140 0.090 0.103 0.100 0.088 0.134 0.139 0.111 0.
Traditional neuro/fuzzy models are generated once during a training phase. At the end of the significance analysis a complete model is built mapping the controlled actuators and their influence on the combustion process in a neural network. It is able to recognize.. among other things. 3) help to precisely determine the intervention quantity. it was only possible to use dead-time-based variables for controlling. With an alteration of the “PLA_BD_ZUT30” (dispatcher load mill 30) and “REG_KL_KALU_M30” (controller flap cold air mill 30) as process input values.” (ranks 2. changes induced by the wear and tear on machines and plant components or any fluctuating calorific values in the primary and secondary fuels. the optimization strategy adapts to the current process situation.. As online characteristics can now be collected by the system itself. The two important online characteristics “MOMENT.Menu Search Print optimization of control. A program called “PiT navigator” performs this optimization. In contrast. this system learns autonomously. on a continual basis. It is just these moderate interventions that account for the adaptivity of the process control! At any given time. NAVIGATOR The boiler model is the basis for optimizing the combustion process. FIG 4 – NAVIGATOR OPTIMIZES THE COMBUSTION PROCESS BASED ON PLANT INPUTS . The navigator independently readjusts its optimization strategy. Figure 4 shows the navigator as the center of the optimization process. the new data allow the process to be adequately controlled much more quickly and at a greater accuracy. The process characteristics gathered by the system are ideally used as new process control variables. In the past. the defined optimization target can now be influenced.
Multisensor incl. The potentials here are an increase of waste combustion with a decrease of steam variation and at the same time with reduced pollutant and corrosive emissions. The camera information is directly processed and compressed on the field PC in order to transfer the highly discretized spatial and temporal signals in the appropriate time frame. For safety reasons. . in rotary kilns of cement plants the system is of a high benefit . the navigator does not overwrite set points in the DCS but provides set point changes to the control. In case of large load ramps. The navigator receives the flame characteristics from a field PC associated to each camera. The navigator is installed on a LINUX PC in the control room and directly communicates with the DCS. first implementations in waste incineration plants also show positive results. video . However.Menu Search Print SYSTEM OVERVIEW The final configuration of the system is shown in Figure 5. Furthermore. It reduces the primary fuel up to 5% and. invalid load ranges. at the same time. reduces the NOx emissions at the primary combustion around 20%. or set point limit violations its input to the DCS is not considered.and CMOS camera Field controller with cabinet System PC with visualization software Transfer der Übertragungof image characteristics Retraction module einrichtung Video signal Rückzugs- Feldschrank ‚ME‘ Cabinet Process coupling with setpoint correction Ethernet DCS FIG 5 – SYSTEM CONFIGURATION SYSTEM APPLICATION Highest benefits are to reach in coal  and oil fired power plants. A large set of interfaces for different control systems exist.
correction of negative effects on the combustion process Cessation of discontinuous check of the fuel distribution CONCLUSION A novel system has been proposed which provides an integrated solution for combustion optimization.Menu Search Print The first complete installation in a coal-fired power plant comprises of six sensors. 1991. Other advantages. Combustion Fossil Power. The excess air in the flue gas was reduced in load variations between 70% and 100 % in an average value of 0.. Kassel. et al. Kaiser. Forth Edition. Inc. “Designing for boiler performance”. product brochure. Combustion Engineering. technical description 2. VGB-Fachtagung “Feuerungen 2001 – Effizienter Feuerungsbetrieb im deregulierten Strommarkt –“. Power Generation Group. November 2001 4. M. Singer. The boiler operation proved to be clearly more positive regarding residual oxygen at the combustion chamber walls helping to prevent corrosion.. a number of system applications even in different industrial processes prove the relevance of such solution. each for one burner. and the combustion of a wider fuel bandwidth. Finally. General changes of boiler behavior will continuously result in model adaptations and thus allow the navigator to accurately find the optimal combustion state. reduction of emissions. A sophisticated camera system extracting flame characteristics of each individual burner coupled with a self adapting neural net based navigator allow the increase of efficiency. Käß. Joseph G. Siemens AG. 1999 3.8%. The total air volume decreases through a locally optimized fuel-air ratio. VGB PowerTech e. REFERENCES 1. which could be gained with the system included: • • • • • • • Increased boiler efficiency (up to 1%) Optimization of the fuel-air ratio for individual burner. Parallel measurements show a substantially lower CO and NOx concentration than without using the system. “Verbrennungsdiagnosesysteme zur Optimierung von Kohlenstaubfeuerungen”. burner level and total combustion system Reduction of excess air Reduction of NOx Reduction of CO Control over extinguishing of the flame on an individual burner and coal mill operation. “External Furnace Television System IMA 011/210-211”.. “Instrumentation &Control in the Power Plant: Automatic Combustion Diagnostics”. The direct availability of additional up to 25 different characteristics of the flame allows a quick reaction on changes in the process. Engineering Office.V. 6-5 ff ..
Powitec Intelligent Technologie. VGB & EPRI Conference. D. Sauer et al. ABB Utilities. Schmidt & S. product brochure. 2001 6.. May 17-18.Menu Search Print 5. Lignite and Low Rank Coals. 2001 7. 2001 . “Combustion Optimization – Intelligent Flame Analysis”. product brochure. “Navigation systems for the cement industry”. Erbach/Eltville.
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