How Direct Contact Heaters Evolved to Outperform CFHWs in Power Plants

Direct Contact HeaterDirect Contact Heaters (DCHs) have become more efficient than Closed Feedwater Heaters (CFHWs). CFHWs have been a mainstay in power plants for decades. Modern technological advances, however, have made DCHs the ideal solution for current and future power plant applications.

A Shift in Performance

Direct contact heaters are not new to the power generation industry. In the early 1900s, DCHs were introduced. They offered some advantages but the limitations of the early steam-injectors resulted in some drawbacks.

These early DCHs had a notable decrease in pressure. This meant they required an intermediate storage system and pump just to resolve the reduced pressure recovery. Closed feedwater heaters did not have this same issue, so even though they were otherwise less efficient, they were the more attractive option.

As a result, direct contact heaters did not achieve the worldwide popularity in power plants they had seemed suited for. Over the past few years, however, steam injection technology has advanced to a point where DCHs can outperform CFWHs without the same concern for pressure recovery.

Technological Advances

Steam injectors draw in cool liquid from one end, mixing it with the injected steam. They are used in feed water and heating water in power plants. The introduction of Fisonic Devices (FDs) into steam injectors, helped to make direct contact heaters a more viable option.

Fisonic devices utilize two-phase flow for hyper-efficient heat exchange. The internal geometry allows for mixing steam and water through direct contact without sacrificing mechanical energy. Used with DCHs, this can replace conventional jet apparatus steam injection.

Fisonic Devices VS Jet Apparatus

In contrast to a fisonic device, a jet apparatus uses a single-phase flow which lacks the efficiency of an FD. A jet apparatus needs an extra heating process to achieve a similar efficiency. The nozzle design and two-phase flow of fisonic steam injection technology provide greater energy efficiency without an additional heating process. This helps to streamline and simplify operations.

An FD can handle a greater range of counter pressures while delivering a constant flowrate of the target mixture. As well as providing a higher outlet pressure than that of the working medium.

In addition to efficiency, this technology is more versatile and is a simpler device with no moving parts and minimal space requirements. 

Electric Heaters

Electric heaters offer an ideal solution for direct contact heaters, particularly in use with fisonic devices. Their simple design complements that of the FDs, minimizing the risk of failure and making maintenance and cleaning easy.

In operations, electricity is the most efficient option for heating. Direct contact heating is a process designed for efficiency, while also requiring the precision temperature control and monitoring only available through electric heaters.

Electric Heater Quotes for Power Plants

Wattco custom designs and manufactures electric immersion heaters for the power generation industry. Our direct contact heaters are tailored to the exact requirements of your process. Get in touch with our team to choose the right heater type, materials, wattages, and design to match your needs and budget.

 

Contact Wattco for power plant heater quotes and information.

Latest blogs

Common Industries that Wattco works with

Case Studies View All

Why is Mineral Oil Used in Thermal Heaters?
Thermal heaters, also known as thermal fluid heaters, employ the use of a thermal liquid such as wat...
Read More..

What to Use When Heating Wax
SituationA popular chemical compound that often requires heating is wax, which is an organic compoun...
Read More..

What is Passivation? Why do We Need to Passivate Flanged Heaters?
  Most of the parts of flanged heaters are made of stainless steel—an alloy that is mainly compri...
Read More..

What is a Digital Controller?
Control panels are essential elements of any electrical device. Control panels are especially i...
Read More..

Vegetable Oil Heating
Food Industries and Vegetable Oil Viscosity In Cleveland Ohio, a large food manufacturer called WATT...
Read More..

Wattco News View All

How to Reduce Heating Costs for Circulation Heaters
Heating is an essential task in most industrial applications. Operating on a large scale, any energy...
Read More..

Press Release: New Location – LaSalle Quebec
LaSalle, QC, February 24 2018 – WATTCO INC, North America’s premier manufacturer of electric hea...
Read More..

Electric Flanged Heater Benefits in Mining Industry
The mining industry is important to the advancement of technology and society. The mind often goes t...
Read More..

How Electric Heating Elements Work with Transfer Fluids
Electric heating is defined as the process of turning electrical energy into heat. This process happ...
Read More..

Electric Heaters in Food & Beverage Pasteurization Systems
Product safety and quality are paramount in the food and beverage industry. For many products, those...
Read More..

Most Popular Blogs View All