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Tuomo Pimi
1.0 Operating a steam power plant (traditional power plants) ........................................... 3
1.1 Basic rules of boiler operation ........................................................................................... 3
1.2 Basic matters of boiler automation .................................................................................... 3
1.3 Boiler facility start-up and operation supervision ............................................................. 4
1.4 Boiler warm-up .................................................................................................................. 6
1.5 Normal operation ............................................................................................................. 13
1.6 Boiler shutdown ............................................................................................................... 15

1.0 Operating a steam power plant (traditional power plants)
The following matters connected to steam power plant operation are general, and they
cannot be directly applied to any specific boiler. The instructions mainly handle operating
fluidized-bed and circulating fluidized bed boilers. If adapted, the instructions can be
applied to other steam boilers as well. The purpose of the instructions is to give basic
information required in operating a steam boiler, which is then deepened if needed. When
operating a boiler, the boiler instructions, written by the manufacturer or facility owner,
must always be followed. The presented values are typical values for power plants that
have the heat power about 100-400 MWh.

1.1 Basic rules of boiler operation

The boiler systems and auxiliary devices must be checked before start-up. The boiler
cannot be started if significant flaws are found in the boiler system or auxiliary systems or,
for example, if there is not enough fuel for start-up. If flaws or defects are discovered, the
overseer must be informed and their directions followed. The party responsible for
operation assigns the person responsible for checking the boiler and auxiliary systems.

Boiler operators must understand the operation of the facility completely and they must
understand all procedures. They must also be aware of all orders of authorities and safety
regulations that are connected to the facility in question. The person responsible for the
boiler operation gives the permission for start-up after a successful check of the boiler and
auxiliary systems.

1.2 Basic matters of boiler automation

The operator must understand, at least, how the controls, main control circuits and
cascade connection function.
The controls usually have the following modes:
cascade = remote

These modes are not necessarily always on the one and same control.

Usually the following matters can be seen from the controller: set value, cascade set
value, output and measured value. The set value is the desired value set by the operator
for the controller, and which the controller aims at reaching. Cascade "remote" is a set
value coming from outside the controller: the operator does not directly influence on the
set value, but it comes, for example, from another controller or from the automation system
(air curve, oxygen set value etc.). The output is a value that the operator controls when the
control is in manual mode. The value can be, for example, the valve position in percents.
The measured value is the prevailing value of the controlled variable.

Control circuits, the function of which must be understood to operate the boiler:
feed water pump control
steam drum level control

high-pressure steam pressure control
boiler main control.

The feed water pump can be controlled in many ways, but today the most common way is
to measure the pressure difference over the feed water valve and to control the feed water
pump revolution according to it. When the feed water valve opens, the pressure difference
falls drastically and the pressure difference control, which is connected with a cascade
connection to the feed water pump revolution, asks the feed water pump for more
revolutions, i.e. more water.
The feed water valve opens if the steam drum water level has fallen below the set value.
The water flow going through the feed water valve is controlled by its own controller, which
is cascade connected to the steam drum level controller. The steam drum level controller
controls the water-level with the feed water flow volume.

In normal mode, the high pressure steam controller receives the pressurization value from
the main controller, which directs the fuel feed according to the high pressure steam set
value. The boiler main controller is given the high pressure set value, according to which
the fuel flow is controlled, also the high pressure steam controller is sent the same set
value, with the addition of, for example, 0.4 MPa. The pressure difference between the
controllers ensures that the reduction valves do not open because of small pressure
fluctuations. When needed, the high pressure steam pressure control controls the
reduction valves.

1.3 Boiler facility start-up and operation supervision

1.3.1 Preparations

Preparation here refers to the things done before the actual start-up of the boiler. The time
required for the preparations varies from boiler to boiler from a few hours to a day. The
preparations aim at bringing the boiler to a state, in which it can be safely started.

1.3.2 Preparation steps

The auxiliary boiler is started-up, to get steam for the main boiler's auxiliary systems, for
example feed water heating or feed water tank pressurization. The electrostatic
precipitator warm-up is also usually began 24 hours before plant start-up. The auxiliary
boiler is started 2-4 hours before beginning the start-up of the main boiler. Often the
auxiliary boiler is continuously running.
To carry out the start-up, the make-up water tank must have the amount of pure water
specified by the boiler manufacturer. The water facility must also be operable, in order to
have more make-up water during running. The consumption of make-up water in a district
heat and condensing plants is a few percents of the fresh steam flow volume. The
consumption in industrial back-pressure plants may be dozens of percents of the fresh
steam flow volume.
Preparations also include checking the amount of start-up fuel and ignition gas and
availability of main fuel. The boiler manufacturer has calculated the required amount of
start-up fuel, without which the boiler cannot be heated enough to burn solid fuel.

Visual checks

The purpose of visual checks is to ensure that the boiler and the auxiliary devices are in
working order before the start-up. A check list should always be used when checking the
systems, so that matters that seem self-evident would not be forgotten. There should also
be a person, who is responsible for realizing the visual checks. Everything out of the
ordinary is to be recorded and reported. The report determines whether the boiler is ready
to be started, or if there is need for more repair or maintenance.

When checking the boiler from the inside, all heat exchanger surfaces must be checked.
For example, in a circulating fluidized bed boiler these are
walls of the furnace
o refractory lining
o man door
o fuel feed points
o refractory lining
the sand superheater chambers below the separator (only in some of the
circulating fluidized bed boilers)
o refractory lining
o superheater pipes
flue gas ducts
o man door
o heat exchangers
o wall pipes.

The tightness of the sight glasses and hatches of the boiler and the flue gas ducts is
checked. The man doors leading to the furnace and the flue gas ducts are closed and the
tightness is visually checked.

During the external check the perfection of the insulations of the boiler, steam lines and
auxiliary systems is checked. The supporting structures are checked in detail at the
thermal expansion measurement points. The condition of the start-up burner fastenings,
the fastenings of the connections feeding the burner and the nozzles is checked. The
inside of the steam drum is checked for excess material, the man doors are closed and
their tightness is checked.

The functions and positions, which must be as specified by the manufacturer for start-up,
of all the valves of the boiler's water and steam systems are checked.

1.3.3 Filling the boiler

The operator ensures that there is enough feed water and make-up water. The
temperature and pressure of the feed water tank are also checked. The pressure is usually
about 2-4 bars and the temperature about 120-145 oC.

The starting of the feed water pumps is usually locked to the position of the shut off valves
after the pump. They must be closed during start-up. Usually only one feed water pump is
needed during start-up, even if the boiler has several pumps. This is the case even if the
pumps are lest 100% pumps. After the pumps start the minimum circulation lines open
automatically or the operator opens them. The feed water pumps can be controlled
according to the pressure or pressure difference. Today, the most common control is

pressure difference control, in which the pressure difference over the feed water valves is
measured and the feed water pump is controlled according to it. The typical pressure
difference is 0.4-0.8 MPa during normal running of the boiler. The pressure difference
during the filling of the boiler is often significantly larger, which is caused by the small
opening of the feed water valve and the minimum rotation of the feed water pump. After
starting the feed water pumps the chemical dosing pump is also started.

The maximum filling speed of the boiler, for example, 20% of the maximum flow, is always
given in the manufacturer instructions. However, the filling of the boiler is always began
more carefully, for example, by opening the valve slowly, until the desired water flow, for
example 5% of the maximum, is reached. The smaller water flow is kept up until the
economizers reach the same value as the feed water temperature. After this, the water
flow can be raised evenly to 20% of the maximum.

The filling of the boiler is finished when the desired steam drum water-level is reached.
The desired level is boiler specific and varies according to manner of measuring. Today,
the steam drum level is often measured so that the normal level is 0 mm, which in
elevation is about 20-30mm under the midpoint of steam drum. The level may also be
measured so that the scale begins from the lower edge of the steam drum. For example,
the filling is stopped at -100 mm, which gives the water a 100 mm expanding margin
before the normal level. The controlling of the steam drum level is continued either
manually or with a steam drum level controller, which is set on single-point mode. During
the start-up, the controller is set on three-point setting when sufficient steam flow has been
achieved. The three-point setting measures the steam drum level, feed water flow into the
boiler and live steam flow. The continuous blow down valve is opened, when the filling is
complete. The continuous blow down volume is about 1-4% of the live steam flow during
normal operation.

In some boilers the economizers easily boil during start-up. To prevent boiling, the blow
down can be kept open to achieve the required amount of cooling water running through
the economizers. When doing this, the adequacy of the make-up water has to be checked
so that the start-up does not lead to dry boiling.

1.4 Boiler warm-up

When warming up the boiler it is important to follow the development of the different
temperature and pressure gradients. In circulating fluidized bed boilers and fluidized bed
boilers it is important that the warm-up speed, specified by the manufacturer, is not
exceeded on the part of the bed temperature, because this may lead to damages in the
protective refractory lining of the furnace. Temperature changes that are too fast in the
furnace, steam network or steam turbine, strain the equipment mechanically and may lead
to breakdown. For example, if the bed temperature rises too fast the refractory lining and
the wall pipes of the boiler thermally expand at different speeds and the refractory lining
breaks and becomes exposed to sand erosion. The typical boiler bed temperature raising
speed is about 1-1.2 oC/min.

Gradients to be observed:
bed temperature
high-pressure steam pressure
high-pressure steam temperature
reheating steam temperature (if the boiler has a reheater).

Other values that the operator should monitor:
superheater temperatures
the material temperatures of the upper and lower edges of the steam drum
separator temperatures
residue oxygen volume
furnace pressure
air box pressure
bed pressure

The boiler warm-up can be begun when the preparations and all checks are complete. It is
good to start the warm-up by checking the latch page and noting the boiler state. The latch
page can be used like a check list during start-up. The latch page shows what can be done
to the boiler and which locking must be checked next to continue the warm-up.

Figure 1 Simplified example of the main interlockings of a circulating fluidized bed

Figure 2 presents the typical bed temperature in a fluidized bed during warm-up. The size
of the boiler is about 250 MW. The Figure also includes the start burner and solid fuel
power during start-up. The maximum capacity of the start burners is about 30% of the total
power of solid fuel.

Figure 2 Example curves from a typical fluidized bed boiler warm-up

After venting the boiler, the operator or the automation opens the start-up valve. In
reheating boilers the start-up valve is placed on the steam intermediate pressure line.
There is a reduction station between the high pressure and intermediate pressure lines,
through which the turbine is bypassed during warm-up. The reduction station valves open
automatically into start-up position after venting. The operator checks that this happens.
The boiler pressure raising can be done in various ways. One of the ways is to set a fresh
steam pressure controller directly to the turbine start-up pressure. Thus, the reduction
station valves stay in start-up position, until the turbine start-up pressure has been

1.4.1 Manually starting the fans

From the combustion air fans, only the flue gas fan may be on during locking. Thus, the
flue gas fan may be started already during boiler filling. The flue gas fan is usually started
against a closed gate valve. It must be checked that the fan power settings (speed control
or guide vanes) are set to the minimum before starting the fan. When the fan is on, the
gate valve is opened and the furnace pressure is set on automatic control or on cascade.
The furnace pressure is set according to the boiler, between -0.6 and -1.6 kPa. The
circulating fluidized bed boilers and the fluidized bed boilers are usually under pressure

A permission to start the high pressure fans, which are used to fluidize the return sand in
the dust separator (cyclone), is given in a circulating fluidized bed after starting the flue
gas fan. Usually, there is one high pressure blower in standby mode to ensure boiler
usability despite maintenance need of the blowers. The high pressure blower pressure
control is set on manual and the damper is set fully (100%) open, the required amount of
fans is started and the pressure control is set on automatic and the set point value to the
correct setting.

After the high pressure blowers are started, a start-up permission for the secondary fans is
received. Before start-up the boiler room air pressure control and the secondary fan
capacity control are checked. The boiler room air pressure control is set either on
automatic or on manual, in which case the control output is set so, that all the combustion
air comes from outside. The fan speed control or the guide vanes are set on minimum.
Now the fan is ready to start. After fan start-up the secondary air setting is set either on
cascade setting or automatic, according to the situation. All the controllers delivering the
secondary air are usually set on cascade, just as the steam coil air preheaters. Only the
airs going to the start-up burners are left on manual, and the dampers are set on the boiler
manufacturer values. If the dampers are left closed, the start-up burners will not have a
cooling air supply. Often the dampers have restricted guidance, which requires them to be
in the minimum position. The secondary airs are often fed to the boiler start-up burners for
cooling and combustion air and to two levels in the lower parts of the boiler. Usually, the
secondary fan is controlled according to pressure during start-up.

The primary fan has a start permission after the secondary fans have been started. The
start-up procedure is the same as with the secondary fans. The primary air is fed through
the grate to be flow air and to the solid fuel feed. The primary fan is usually controlled
according to the flow volume during start-up.

1.4.2 Group sequence start-up of the fans

The fans are started as a sequence in modern boilers. Nevertheless, it is important to

know how to start the fans individually in case the sequence start-up fails for some reason.
In sequency start-up, the boiler automation is given the order to start all fans and set air
controllers to right setting. Usually all the controllers are changed to cascade mode, except
for the start-up burners cooling- and combustion airs. Depending on the automation
system, the sequence start-up can be observed either with the aid of sequence step
numbers or a step screen. The sequence start-up may fail due to many reasons, for
example, if the fan motor control has been left on manual, the automation cannot start it.
The problem can be repaired by setting the fans on auto mode and running the group
sequence start-up again. Of course, if there are boiler lockings, they prevent group start-up
as well.

1.4.3 The boiler manual purge

After the fans are started, the boiler is ready to purge. The purge is mainly done with
secondary air. The purge times are boiler specific and also vary according to national
legislation. Usually the purge time is about 10 minutes. Before purging the secondary air
pressure settings are checked to be on cascade or automation, it must also be checked
that the set value is adequate. The purge happens by adding air flow into the boiler by
giving the higher secondary air controls an adequate setting value. The progress of the

purging can be observed from the purge display. In some boilers, merely purged with
secondary air is not sufficient, but a short purge with recycled gas fan is also performed.

When the purging time is over, the higher controls of the secondary airs can be set back to
cascade, which reduces the air flow to minimum. Possible recycled gas purging can also
be finished. The boiler is now ready to start. Purge on automatic sequency

The boiler purge automation takes care of all purging matters with one command. In many
boilers, the purging automation can also start the fans if required. The automation may
also start the lowest conveyors and cut-off feeders of the fuel feeding. The purge progress
is overseen on a purge display, which usually show the locking information related to
purge and the purge times and air volumes. The permission to start-up the boiler is
received after purge.

1.4.5 Combustion air fan lockings

Figure 3 An example of a circulating fluidized bed boiler combustion air fan interlocking

1.4.6 Bed material feeding

The bed material feed lock is usually removed when the boiler combustion air fans have
been started. The bed material feed is began after the start burner has been started. If the
boiler has been emptied from bed material during the previous shutdown, the bed material
can be put into the bed before beginning start-up. This is usually done with the aid of a
pneumatically discharging tank truck. This usually allows the boiler to be fed with the
required amount of bed material quickly. If there is no bed material, the start-up may be
delayed because one has to wait that the solid fuel locking acknowledging from the air box
pressure takes place. If there is not enough bed material, the grate may be damaged.

The capacity of the start burners may not be increased before the bed pressure reaches
the minimum value set by the manufacturer (for example, about 2.5-3.0 kPa). The fly ash
system must also be started when there is bed material in the boiler. Material used for bed
material is sand that is appropriate for the use or old bottom ash. Old bottom ash is used
when the fuel ashes are appropriate to be used for bed material.

1.4.7 Igniting the start burner

The start burner may be ignited with local control that are located in the immediate vicinity
of the burners, or from the control room with a operation system. To ignite the burners
during start-up, the boiler must be purged and there must be enough start-up time.

Figure 4 An example of the interlocks related to start burners

The burner is ignited with the aid or group start-up. The group start-up may also take care
of starting the start burners fuel pumps and setting the required controls into the right
positions and set values. If the group starting does not take care of fuel preparations, it
must be done manually. In burners that work on light fuels, the preparations include, for
example, the following actions:
fuel pump start-up
setting the line pressure control on automatic and setting the set value (for example
15-20 bar)
setting the burner power control on minimum (may be just a pressure or flow

When the burner group start-up has been initiated, the operator may oversee the progress
with the aid of the operation system. The operation system displays the burner state and
the lockings related to the burners. In modern systems, a flame symbol will appear at the
point of the ignited burner. Usually, liquid gas is used as the start-up fuel for burners. The
ignition flame and the burner main flame have their own flame indicators. All the valve
functions, and their positions, related to burner start-up, can be seen on the operation

The start burner warms the boiler into the temperature required for beginning the solid fuel
feed. The locking is usually between 400-500 oC (bed temperature) depending on the
boiler and used fuel. The locking also requires, in addition to temperature, that at least one
start burner is on. The start burner locking usually opens at 600 oC, which means that at
temperatures higher than that, the boiler may only be operated with solid fuel. In practice,
the start burners are used to support heating up at bed temperatures of 400-800 oC.

1.4.8 Beginning the solid fuel feed

The solid fuel may be fed into the boiler when an adequate bed temperature has been
reached and the air box pressure has also gone above the locking threshold, for example,
4 kPa. The solid fuel feed may be started manually or with group start-up. In both cases,
the lockings related to solid fuel, are on. When the solid fuel feed is begun, the bottom ash
removal is also simultaneously started. However, the bed pressure must be high enough,
for example 4-5 kPa.

Often it is desired to accelerate the temperature increase momentarily during the starting
of the solid fuel feed, for example to 8-10 oC/minute. Normal start-up speed, which is about
1 oC/minute, is returned to after starting the lines. At the same time the oxygen amount,
which should decrease intensely, is observed. The operator's actions vary from facility to
facility according to the realization of the fuel feed. If the fuel is high in sulphur, the sulphur
removal systems are started simultaneously with the solid fuel feed systems.

1.4.9 Starting solid fuel manually

In manual start-up, the fuel lines are started on minimum load one by one. When all lines
are in use, the capacity control is handled manually. When fresh steam production and
pressure are sufficient, the pressure control can be put on automatic to control the boiler
capacity. In manual start-up, the manufacturer's instructions for start-up methods must be

The lowest fuel feed equipment and cut-off feeders have been started before the bed
temperature reaches, for example, 300 oC. It is also possible that there is a step in the fan

group start-up, which starts the equipment in question. The rest of the fuel conveyors are
started manually opposite the fuel flow direction. The conveyors and screws are started
before there is fuel in them, which prevents the formation of piles and obstructions. As the
fuel feeders are started, the controls are set on automatic or cascade and the settings are

1.4.10 Starting solid fuel feed with group start-up

When using group start-up a pulse start is often used. Pulse start refers to starting the
equipment in the same group start group for a period of time and then turning it off for the
same period of time. The pulse and the pause period are typically about 60 to 90 seconds,
usually three pulses are given. Pulse start enables making the bed temperature increase
evenly and in a controlled manner. When the lines have been started, the fuel feed is
controlled manually.

Boiler heating is continued with solid fuel by increasing the fuel capacity slowly in
accordance with the start-up curve. Simultaneously, the start-up burners' capacities are
decreased, until they are on minimum load. After this, the burners are decreased one by
one, while the solid fuel volume is increased. However, one burner must be supporting the
burning until the bed temperature is normal > 800 oC.

1.5 Normal operation

The power generated in the boiler during normal use is usually controlled with the fresh
steam pressure control, the flow control may also be used. The flow control is usually only
used in cases, in which several different types of boilers feed the same steam roller or
turbine. The boiler main control controls the turbine feed on the basis of the given setting
and fresh steam pressure. The air volumes, required for combustion, are calculated on the
basis of the fuel feed and they automatically follow the boiler load. The amount of residual
oxygen is calculated form the flue gas and it is corrected by altering the secondary air
volume. When the consumption of the steam taken from the boiler is changed, the main
controller detects a change in the fresh steam pressure and regulates the fuel feed
according to it automatically. The operator must see to it that the automation copes with
the change and if required, helps the automation.

The main duty of the operator during normal running is to supervise the boiler and to
realize the load changes when needed. In the following we shall list things that the
operator supervises during normal running.

Feed water and steam

oxygen content
continuous exit amount
steam drum level
feed water valve pressure difference
fresh steam pressure
fresh steam temperature
temperature of the reheated steam

SO2 [Sulphur dioxide]
NOX [nitrogen monoxide (NO) + nitrogen dioxide (NO2) = NOX]
N2O [nitrous oxide]
CO [carbon monoxide]
O2 [oxygen]

Furnace, separator and rear drive

bed pressure
bed temperatures
separator temperature
bottom ash removal
bed material feed
lime feed
the cleanliness of the heat exchange level
flue gas temperatures

1.5.1 Emissions on solid fuel

There are many ways to affect the emissions. In the following we mention some of them.
SO2 missions are affected by fuel choice and sulphur removal systems. By using low
sulphur fuels, the emissions may be cut. However, often the low sulphur fuel is more

The sulphur removal is usually realized in fluidized bed and circulation fluidized bed boilers
by feeding lime straight into the furnace. The lime is fed straight into the bed, which makes
it react with the sulphur in the fuel. In boilers other than fluidized bed boilers separate
sulphur removal system may also be used in the flue gas duct. The sulphur removal
systems can be divided into semidry washers and wet washers.

In some boilers, there also is a NOx removal system, which functions with ammonia. The
ammonia is fed either into the separators or into the upper part of the rear drive. The
sulphur removal and NOx reduction systems are often started with the group start system.
The operator only needs to check the control settings after the starting. The systems
supervise the boiler's emissions and aim at keeping them at the controls' set values. NO x
emissions can also be influenced with the air factor, secondary and primary air relation
and combustion temperature.

1.5.2 Boiler dust removal

The heat exchange surfaces of the boiler become dirty, and thus, the boiler must be
cleaned form time to time. The need for cleaning varies according to the boiler type and
the fuel used. On the other hand, the cleaner solutions and cleaning targets depend on the
boiler type. The most common cleaners are steam cleaners. Other possible cleaners
include ultra sound cleaner, bullet and water cleaners and various clatterers are also used.
The furnaces of pulverized fuel boilers and fluidized bed boilers also have cleaners. There
are no cleaners in the furnaces of circulating fluidized bed boilers, as the moving sand
cleans the surfaces sufficiently.
Often the cleaning is sufficient, when the boiler is cleaned once every shift. The interval
may be changed due to use experience.

1.5.3 Visual checks during running

A visual check is performed at regular intervals during the normal running of the boiler.
The check is performed during each shift or at least daily. A written report of the check is
written for the shift supervisor.

At least the following should be checked during the checking.

leaks from the furnace
abnormal sounds
support structures
boiler hatches
bottom ash system

pump shaft seals
valve stem insulation
water glass condition
abnormal sounds
steam cleaners
steam drum (compare local measurement values to the control system values)
o pressure measurements
o surface measurement

Flue gas ducts

fly ash system
flue gas cleaning systems
abnormal sounds

1.6 Boiler shutdown

This description expects the boiler to be at full load (100%) when beginning the shutdown.
The description does not discuss the turbine or steam circulation operation during

The boiler fuel load is decreased to about 50% of the original. The bed temperature should
stay in the normal range during the load drop. The normal bed temperature varies between
800-900 oC. This varies from boiler to boiler. Usually the bed temperature tends to
increase when the fuel load in decreased, as the cooling effect of the moisture in the fuel is
lost when the fuel volume is decreased. In some cases, the fuel moisture may be as high

as 60%. The boiler must also be cleaned during the fuel drop. The cleaning is performed
before the boiler load is bellow 50%.

On small loads, the circulating fluidized bed bed material circulation requires more air than
burning the fuel. Because of this, the oxygen control is usually set to manual before
reaching 50% fuel load, and the oxygen volume is allowed to increase freely during
shutdown. If the steam drum is unstable, it is taken on manual drive.

The boiler fuel load decrease is continued at maximum 10% per minute, as long as it takes
to reach the fuel load minimum. At the same time, the bed temperature should decrease to
the lower limits of the normal operation range, to about 800 oC. The bed temperature
continues to decrease slowly, and at about 650 oC the start burners are started to help. At
the same time the solid fuel feed is cut off and the boiler cool down is controlled with the
aid of the start burners. The cooling speed may not exceed the start-up speed of the

The start burners may be turned off when the boiler's bed temperature is 350-400 oC. The
fans are left on until the bed temperature reaches about 200 oC. The flue gas fans are set
on lower than normally: close to normal air pressure, but on vacuum.

Figure 5. Bed temperature curve during boiler shutdown

The boiler start-up valve is left open, until the steam development ends. After this, the feed
water pump and the chemical feed can also be stopped.

If the stoppage after the shutdown is expected to be long, the bottom ash system is left on
until the bed is empty. The combustion air fans must also be on to properly empty the bed.
If the stoppage is short, the old bed material can be left in the boiler for the next start-up.
The used bed material may contain corrosive chemicals. The fly ash system is left on until
no ash comes to the conveyors.

When the boiler steam system is nearly at the air pressure 100-200 kPa, all the steam
drum and superheater drain valves may be opened. The boiler water and steam pipes
cannot be in contact with air if not required, so some sort of preservation must be carried
out on the boiler, according to the situation. The boiler pipes may be preserved by, for
example, emptying the boiler from water and filling the pipes with nitrogen gas or by filling
the pipes with water that has been treated with preservation chemicals.