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# Boiler efficiency measurement

## Department of Energy Engineering

Contents
Heat balance on boilers
Efficiency determination
Loss categories
Fluegas condensation principals
Seasonal efficiency
Emission evaluation
Stoichiometry
Combustion is an oxidation process,
which is an exotherm chemical reaction:
Exotherm - heat is produced by reaction
Endotherm - heat is needed for keeping up reaction
Authoterm - neutral from heat viewpoint,
(reaction do not need or produce any heat)
Base equations of combustion:
C + O
2
= CO
2
+ heat
2H
2
+ O
2
= 2H
2
O + heat
S + O
2
= SO
2
+ heat
Air as Oxygen source for combustion
For combustion two component is needed:
Combustible element or material
Oxygen
But for feeding oxygen generally ambient air is used
except for some missile, military and welding techniques
Composition of air: Oxygen O
2
21% [V/V, mol/mol]
Nitrogen N
2
78% [V/V, mol/mol]
Others (CO
2
, rare gas, etc.)1% [V/V, mol/mol]
Simplification for combustion calculations:
Composition of air: Oxygen O
2
21% [V/V, mol/mol]
Nitrogen N
2
79% [V/V, mol/mol]
By mass: Oxygen O
2
23.3% [m/m]
Nitrogen N
2
76.7% [m/m]
Excess air factor
A stoichiometric mixture of air and fuel is one that contains just
sufficient oxygen for the complete combustion of the fuel
- a mixture which has an excess of air is termed a weak mixture,
- and one which has a deficiency of air is termed a rich mixture.
Normally it is going to be burnt fuel totally in order to utilize all
the possibility for energy generation, which needs at least
theoretical air quantity or generally a bit more.
The excess air factor:
[-] =

Air actually use
Air stoichiometrically necessary
A
A
=
0
Determination of optimal excess air factor
Excess air calculation from measured data
From equations: V
d
= V
od
+ (-1) L
o
' ,
and
0.21 . (-1) Lo' = O
2fluegas
. (V
od
+ (-1) . L
o
' )
taking into account that V
od
yL
o
' can get:
fluegas
O
2
21
21

=
Excess air factor variation
Determination of optimal excess air factor
Depends on several conditions:
Fuel type, combustion system, burner construction,
pollutant emission limits, etc.
Some usual values of the excess air factor :
1.2 1.5 pulverized solid fuel
1.4 - 2.0 coarse solid fuel
1.1 - 1.4 oil
1.03 - 1.3 gas
fuel
Heat balance on boilers
Input power sum is equal with output power sum: Q
in
= Q
out

Input heat components:
Input heat in chemical bound of fuel. Q
fuel
= B H
i

Input physical heat of fuel: Q
fuelphysical
= B c
pfuel
(t
in
- t
amb
)
Input heat of hot air: Q
air
= B
Lo
c
pair
(t
in
t
amb
)
Other

Input heat: Q
in
= Q
fuel
+ Q
fuelphysical
+ Q
in
+ Q
other

other amb fuel fuel amb air pair ' Lo i
in
Q )) t t ( c ) t t ( c H ( B
Q
&
&
+ + + =

Definition of boiler efficiency
Output power can be divided into two categories:

Q
in
= Q
useful
+ Q
loss

Q
useful
= Q
in
Q
loss
,

Two forms of boiler efficiency determination can be gained.

Q
Q
Q
Q
in
loss
in
useful
boiler
1
&
&
&
&
= =

direct indirect
Direct efficiency
Useful heat power can be determined from mass flow rate
of heat transfer medium and from inlet and outlet enthalpy:
Q
useful
= m (h
out
h
in
)
For determination of direct boiler efficiency fuel and heat
transfer medium flow rate needs to be measured in addition
to inlet and outlet medium pressure measurement.
Direct efficiency does not give information about reasons
of boiler efficiency variation.
It does not give any idea how to reduce loss and increase
efficiency
Indirect efficiency
Different types of loss can be separated into two groups:
Firing type losses
are originated from not total or not complete
combustion of the fuel, which means that unburnt
combustible parts remaining after combustion end
Heat exchanger type losses
means that some part of generated heat by combustion
goes to waste, not to useful purpose, not to heat transfer
medium
Firing type losses
Different forms of firing losses:
gas
- unburnt gas (CO,C
x
H
y
)

soot
- soot

coke
- coke

flyash
combustible part of flying ash

ash
- combustible part of bottom ash

Considering above mentioned losses can be calculated the firing efficiency:

F
= 1 - (
gas
+
soot
+
coke
+
flyash
+
ash
)
Loss calculation
In case of oil and gas firing, when it fulfils environmental
protection requirements, firing loss is neglectable.
In case of solid fuel firing generally it is worth to take into
account.
In this case it is necessary to distinguish inlet fuel flow from
actually burning, fluegas-developing fuel flow.
B
fg
=
F
B
Loss quantity can be determined from operational measurement
results.
Q
loss
= massflow burnable content heating value of burnable part
Loss factor is given by the ratio of loss heat power and input
power.
= Q
loss
/ Q
in
Heat exchanger type losses
Heat exchanger type loss is the common name
of heat produced by combustion, but going
another direction than heat transfer medium,
which is actually loss.
Different forms of heat exchanger type losses:

fg
fluegas heat loss

rad
radiation heat loss

ashheat
ash physical heat loss
Fluegas heat loss
Heat delivered to the ambient air because flue gas has higher
temperature than initial or ambient one.
In all of the cases this is the largest loss, which determines
mainly the boiler efficiency.
At an up to date boiler it is generally in between
fg
= 5 - 10 %
At earlier constructions it is in between
fg
= 10 - 15 %
When fluegas is cooled below water vapor dew-point
temperature (which is generally in between 40-60C)
extra heat can be gained.
It can cause that overall boiler efficiency can be above 100 %
in case when input heat is calculated from LHV.
Calculation of flue gas loss factor

fg
= Q
fg
/ Q
in

Q
fg
= m
fg
(h
fgout
- h
fgamb
) = B (
Vo
+(-1)
Lo
) c
pfg
(t
fgout
t
amb
)

+
[ ]
i
amb air L fgout fg L fg
fg
H
t c r K t c K +
=
0 0 0
* ) 1 (

## Fluegas heat loss

variation in case of
fuel oil S firing
Utilization of condensation heat
Condensation of fluegas water content
Fluegas can be considered as ideal mixture of different
gas components
Accoding to Daltons law he pressure of a mixture of
gases can be defined as the summation of partial pressure
of each components:
When fluegas temperature drop down below saturation
temperature belonging to partial pressure of water in the
fluegas
Partial pressure of water in the fluegas:
' L ) 1 ( ' V
water H 12 . 11
p
' V
V
p p
0 0
abs
O 2 H
abs O 2 H
+
+
= =

## Saturation temperature and pressure values

0 bar 0 C
0.012 bar 10 C
0.023 bar 20 C
0.042 bar 30 C
0.074 bar 40 C
0.094 bar 45 C
0.12 bar 50 C
0.157 bar 55 C
0.2 bar 60 C
1 bar 100 C
Saturation pressure Saturation temperature
Variation of flue gas dew point with excess air factor
1 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4
50
55
60
t
h

h
( )

h
.
Heating value ratio variation
1,12 5,5 4,9 kWh/kg Pellets/wood
bricks
1,06 10,6 10,0 kWh/l Light fuel oil
1,08 32,8 30,4 kWh/m
3
Liquefied
petroleum
gas
1,11 9,8 8,9 kWh/m
3
Liquefied
natural gas
1,11 11,5 10,4 kWh/m
3
Natural gas
Conversion
factor
Higher
Heating Value
(HHV)
Lower
Heating Value
(LHV)
Unit
Radiation type loss
Radiation type loss is called the heat transferred to the ambient
air by outer surface of the boiler.
The name originates from ancient boiler construction, where
brick works actually radiated heat to the ambient. Nowadays this
heat is transferred mainly by convection, but the name remains
the same.
Actual value can be calculated according to heat transfer rules
considering actual insulation solution.
This loss factor varies in between
rad
= 0.5 - 1.0 %
referring to maximal load.
But the heat loss power is independent from load level, it is
constant.
(Q
rad
= const.).
This cause that loss factor is in inverse proportionality with load.
( 1% loss at nominal load increases up to 5% at 20% part load)
Comparison of direct
and indirect boiler efficiency
Both methods shall give the same value. But in
real some difference can be experienced because
of measurement inaccuracies.
Generally determination by indirect method is
simpler, because fuel and heat transfer medium
measurement is not needed.
Furthermore indirect method gives information on
waste heat distribution and can be information
base of efficiency increment.
Direct method cannot be used for this purpose,
but it can be good control of indirect method.
Boiler efficiency variation at part load
Efficiency variation
and assessment of seasonal efficiency

Load independent losses
Load dependent losses
Effective energy
1/
K

0 1 Workload
q
B
/
K

S
t
a
n
d
a
r
d
i
z
e
d

f
u
e
l

i
n
p
u
t

q
F

q
F
= Q
F
/(Q`
K
*t
B
)

= Q
H
/(Q`
K
*t
B
)

with Q
K
: Nominal boiler capacit
t
B
: Running time of the boiler
Q
F
: Firing power
Q
H
: Useful power

From these values the average efficiency

a
() can be calculated

a
() = *
K
/(-*q
B
+ q
B
)
Atmospheric premix type burner
Atmospheric premix type burner
with open combustion system wall hung boiler
Atmospheric premix type burner
with open combustion system floor standing boiler
Atmospheric premix type burner
with open combustion system floor standing boiler
Examples for different combustion air supply

Open Closed Condensing type
Combustion system
Combustion system of condensation type boilers
Condensation type wall-hung boiler
Measurement arrangement
Direct efficiency calculation

D
Q
useful
Q
firing
Direct efficiency of the boiler:
lower heating value
kJ
m
3
H
i
34000 :=
Volume flow of natural gas;
V
gas
where
Q
firing
V
gas
H
i

## in- and outlet temperature of cooling water

t
cwout
t
cwin
t
cwin
t
cwout
+
2
temperature specific heat of water at
c
w
temperature
t
cwin
density of water at

w
useful power;
Q
useful
where:
Q
useful
V
cw

cw
c
w
t
cwout
t
cwin

( )

## Parameter dependence on temperature

Density of water

w
(20C) = 998.5 kg/m
3
Specific heat variation of water:
15 25 35 45 55 65 75 85
4.18
4.185
4.19
4.195
4.2
c
vm
t ( )
t
.
Flue gas heat loss calculation
where
air
= 14.981 [kg/kg]

fg0
= 15.981 [kg/kg]
c
fg
= 1.107 [kJ/kg]
c
air
= 1.04 [kJ/kg]
K: specific quantity of condensate water for 1 m
3
or 1 kg natural gas
(from measured data)
r = 2510 kJ/kg evaporization heat of water
H
i
Lower Heating Value by mass [kJ/kg]
[ ]
i
amb air L fgout fg L fg
fg
H
t c r K t c K +
=
0 0 0
* ) 1 (

## Density variation of natural gas

g0
0.72
kg
m
3
:=
g
t p
g
,
( )

g0
273
t 273 +

p
g
101325 +
101325
:=
10 15 20 25 30
0.66
0.68
0.7
0.72

g
t 2000 , ( )

g
t 2500 , ( )

g
t 3000 , ( )
t
.
Indirect efficiency calculation

ind
= 100%-
fg
-
rad

rad
= .A
outer
.(t
wall
-t
amb
)/Q
firing
[-]
Where:
= 20 W/m
2
K - heat transfer coefficient
A
outer
outer surface of the boiler [m
2
]
t
wall
outer surface temperature [C]
t
amb
ambient temperature [C]
Evaluation of emission measurement
ppm
CxHy 18 :=
Unburnt hydrocarbons:
ppm CO 70 :=
Carbon monoxyde:
ppm NO
x
150 :=
Nitrogen oxydes:
Measured emission values of combustion process dependent pollutants:
%
O
2r
3 :=
Refeence oxygen content of flue gas for evaluation of emission limits:
1.235 =

21
21 O
2

:=
Operational excess air factor:
%
O
2
4 :=
Measured oxygen content in fluegas:
Evaluation of emission measurement
mg/m
3

CxHy
rm
49.327 = CxHy
rm
21 O
2r

21 O
2

CxHy
m
:=
Reference value:
mg/m
3

CxHy
m
46.586 = CxHy
m
CxHy
M
C4H10
22.41
:=
kg/kmol
M
C4H10
58 :=
mg/m
3

CO
rm
92.606 = CO
rm
21 O
2r

21 O
2

CO
m
:=
Reference value:
mg/m
3

CO
m
87.461 = CO
m
CO
M
CO
22.41
:=
kg/kmol
M
CO
28 :=
mg/m
3

NOx
rm
326.01 = NOx
rm
21 O
2r

21 O
2

NOx
m
:=
Reference value:
mg/m
3

NOx
m
307.898 = NOx
m
NO
x
M
NO2
22.41
:=
kg/kmol
M
NO2
46 :=
Summary and comparison of emission values
Emission values are refernced to dry (water free) fluegas
at 273K, 101,3 kPa, 3% oxygen content.
NOx
rm
326.01 =
mg/m
3
< 350 mg/m
3

CO
rm
92.606 =
mg/m
3
< 100 mg/m
3

CxHy
rm
49.327 =
mg/m
3
< 50 mg/m
3

Summary
You are already familiar with
Heat balance on boilers
Efficiency determination
Loss categories
Fluegas condensation principals
Seasonal efficiency
Emission evaluation
Thank You for Your Attention !