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An Emerson Smart Wireless network with Rosemount wireless transmitters is enabling thermal monitoring of biomass gasification pre-combustion chambers at a Polish power plant.

New temperature data is being transmitted over a WirelessHART network to operators to ensure that the ceramic walls of the chamber are not damaged by stress fractures through overheating.

Both power and heat is produced by the Elektrownia Stalowa Wola plant gasification system using forest waste wood and other biomass material from agriculture.

The organic waste passes through a 9m (l) x 3.5m (d) rotating pre-combustion chamber, where it is heated using natural gas to a temperature between 280 and 360C.

The carbonised particles that are produced are burnt in a fluidised bed, which releases energy for steam generation.

The pre-combustion chamber is made from a ceramic material that is protected from damage by a layer of insulation.

Elektrownia Stalowa Wola wanted to further safeguard the equipment by measuring the temperature of the chamber walls so that they could be alerted to any potential problems.

Should temperatures go beyond 350C, an alarm is triggered and the operator can adjust the amount of air going into the chamber or reduce the heating of the biomass.

If required, the fuel for the chamber can be shut down completely.

Should the operator not react in time, the system can shut down automatically.

Two sensors have been installed within the insulation material to provide the temperature measurements of the chamber walls.

Two Rosemount WirelessHART temperature transmitters have been installed on the rotating chamber delivering measurements from the sensors every 30sec.

This provides the operator with the information needed to protect the chamber from overheating.

A further transmitter has been installed nearby and acts as a router, strengthening the self-organising wireless network by providing an extra route for signals to pass through.

The device also measures the ambient temperatures.

Emerson’s AMS Wireless Snap-on application was used to validate the network and is now used to manage the wireless network and identify any potential trouble spots.

Measurement data from the sensors is sent via a Smart Wireless gateway to the existing Emerson Ovation expert control system that controls the biomass gasification process.

Emerson Process Management – Wireless

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