Power Air Quality  Insights  
No. 138   January 2, 2014





The following insights can be sent to you every week. This alert contains the details on the upcoming hot topic hour, breaking news, and the headlines for the Utility E Alert for the previous week. This is one of a number of free services. You can sign up for any of these newsletters and of course request to be removed from the mailing list at any time. See registration following the newsletter.


·        $425 Million Will Be Spent To Monitor Gas Turbine and Combined Cycle Plants This Year

·        Coal-fired Power Plants Will Spend Just Under $1 Trillion for Products and Services In 2014

·        Renewable Energy Briefs     

·        Headlines for the December 20, 2013 - Utility E-Alert

·        “Air Preheaters and Heat Exchangers” will be the Hot Topic on January 9, 2014

·        McIlvaine Hot Topic Hour Registration



$425 Million Will Be Spent To Monitor Gas Turbine and Combined Cycle Plants This Year

In 2014, the total market for air and water monitoring including field and laboratory instruments will exceed $22 billion. Of this total, $2.6 billion will be spent by the power industry. In this segment, more than $350 million will be spent for air, water, liquid and gas measurement at gas turbine and combined cycle plants.  Industrial gas turbine operators provide an additional market. Seventy-five million will be spent by the oil and gas extraction and processing, refining and other industrial operators of gas turbines for their monitoring needs.  These forecasts segmented for each country are displayed in Air and Water Monitoring World Market, published by the McIlvaine Company.  (www.mcilvainecompany.com)

This year, 75,000 MW of new utility electrical generating turbines will be added to a world base of 1,100,000 MW already installed.   In addition, a large number of smaller turbines will be purchased by industrial plants which are generating electricity and steam or are compressing gases and use gas turbines to provide the compression power. 

One of the fastest growing industrial sectors is the application of gas turbines for landfill and sewage plant biogas.  These plants require the measurement of formaldehyde or other organic compounds.  Measurement of H2S is also required.  Some utility and industrial operators burn oil.  Those units burning fuel oil as a secondary fuel typically need to install SO2 monitors. 

Nearly all the turbines regardless of the application must measure NOx continuously.  In some cases this can be done with predictive systems, but more typically is accomplished with continuous emissions monitoring systems.   It is also often necessary to install selective catalytic reduction (SCR) systems which use ammonia as a reagent.   Continuous measurement of the ammonia slip is necessary for both control and regulatory goals.  It is also necessary to install a second set of NOx analyzers to determine both the raw NOx as well as the NOx in the stack.

In the simple cycle mode, it is often necessary to add tempering air prior to the selective catalytic reduction systems.  Measurement of gas flow and temperature is, therefore, required at multiple locations.

Some turbines are operated in the simple cycle mode, so no water is necessary for cooling condensate.  However, even these units require fogging or inlet air cooling systems using deionized water.  Hence, monitoring water quality is necessary.  For combined cycle operation, dry cooling is becoming more popular. However, the vast majority of systems use wet cooling towers.   Companies such as Nalco and GE have automated chemistry systems to measure the parameters and add chemicals to maximize the number of times the water can be recycled.

The cooling water blowdown requires measurement of pollutant levels before and after final purification.  Zero liquid discharge systems are becoming popular.  These require various filtration and evaporation steps, all with air and water monitoring requirements.

Monitoring the feedwater and the condensate where heat recovery steam generators are utilized requires very accurate monitors for dissolved oxygen, flow, pH and other parameters.

For more information on Air and Water Monitoring World Market, click on: http://home.mcilvainecompany.com/index.php/markets/2-uncategorised/106-n031.


Coal-fired Power Plants Will Spend Just Under $1 Trillion for Products and Services

In 2014

Despite the popularity of alternatives, coal-fired power will continue to be the leading type of power generation in the near term.  This year coal-fired power plants will spend $390 billion for new facilities and $579 billion for upgrades, repairs and replacements.  This results in a total expenditure of $969 billion.  Each of the thousands of projects and power plants which will be spending this money are identified in two McIlvaine publications, Utility Tracking System and Chinese Utility Plans. The reason that China is singled out separately is that its purchases will equal those of the other countries combined.

Expenditures for new power plants are made in advance of the date of start-up.  So, by viewing the value of power plants starting up in 2017, one gains perspective on the 2014 outlays. Asia will dominate the market for new coal-fired power plants. 


New Coal-fired Boilers Starting Up in 2017



1000 MW                                   

$ Billions
















All of these power plants will have expensive combustion systems including fans, furnaces, heat exchangers, coal handling and ash removal. Most units will be supercriticals with high pressures and temperatures. 

All will have elaborate water treatment and steam cycle systems. Most will have reverse osmosis membrane systems following several pre-treatment steps including electrodeionization or ion-exchange. Sophisticated valves and pumps will be needed to cope with the extreme conditions in the steam cycle. Wastewater systems are becoming increasingly complex to meet the discharge limits set by most countries.

Some units will use seawater on a once-through basis for cooling. Others will use cooling towers and recycle most of the water. This will require filtration and pumping expenditures.  In the drought prone areas, dry cooling will be used.  This will result in significant expenditures for fans.

Over 80 percent of the new units will incorporate both flue gas desulfurization and DeNOx.  The complexity of the iteration between combustion goals and air pollution control goals will require extensive optimization, automation and control systems.

Expenditures at existing power plants will be close to $600 billion in 2014. This includes major environmental upgrades in the U.S., Eastern Europe and, particularly, China.

ExpendituExpenditures at Existing Plants in 2014 Based On the 2013 Installed Base


1000 MW

$ Billions
















Western Europe will continue to move toward biomass co-firing and optimization of existing power plants to reduce CO2 emissions. A coal-fired boiler which is converted from subcritical to supercritical operation can reduce greenhouse gases by as much as 20 percent.

Ongoing environmental expenses include reagents such as lime, limestone and ammonia.  A number of SCR systems in the U.S. and Europe have been in operation for many years.  Catalyst is replaced every 3-5 years, but there are other expenditures which accelerate with age.   A minority of the installations use fabric filters for particulate control. New bags are required on a 4-5 year cycle. New belts are required for the gypsum dewatering on a 1-2 year cycle.

Water treatment chemical expenditures are significant. They are used to prevent scaling and corrosion and to enhance separation processes. Seals and packing in the pumps and valves must be replaced regularly due to the extreme conditions found in the steam cycle.

The political and regulatory road blocks to the construction of new coal-fired power plants are creating a very large market for products and services at existing power plants.

For more information on:

Utility Tracking System, click on: http://home.mcilvainecompany.com/index.php/databases/2-uncategorised/89-42ei

Chinese Utility Plans, click on: http://home.mcilvainecompany.com/index.php/databases/2-uncategorised/88-42eic


Renewable Energy Briefs

Cape Wind and Siemens Sign Major Offshore Wind Turbine Supply Agreement

Siemens and Cape Wind have signed a major contract in which Siemens will supply Cape Wind its industry-leading 3.6-megawatt (MW) offshore wind turbines, an offshore Electric Service Platform (ESP) and a service agreement for the first 15 years of commercial operations.

Siemens, the world’s leading offshore wind turbine manufacturer, will fabricate, install and commission its 3.6-MW offshore wind turbines for Cape Wind. The Siemens 3.6-MW offshore turbine has been the ‘workhorse’ of the global offshore wind industry and has had an unparalleled track record on performance and reliability. It has been the leading turbine used at existing offshore wind farms and it is going to be used in at least eight other offshore wind farms currently under construction or approaching construction.

Siemens is also providing Cape Wind with a long-term maintenance program for the wind turbines and ESP for a period of 15 years. Siemens will hire locally to fill the majority of its operations and maintenance positions at Cape Wind’s future service headquarters on Falmouth Harbor on Cape Cod.

Siemens is subcontracting the manufacturing of the ESP to Cianbro to be fabricated in its facility in Brewer, Maine. The ESP was designed for Cianbro by Moffatt and Nichol Engineers of Norfolk, VA. The ESP will be located toward the center of the offshore wind farm site and it will transform the voltage of the electricity produced by the wind turbines.

Expanding Global Growth Predicated for Geothermal Energy

As the geothermal industry wraps up an exciting and challenging year, the sector has positioned itself to grow more by 2020 than ever before. “We are seeing new technology developments move forward and new projects being announced in every region of the world,” remarked Karl Gawell, Executive Director, Geothermal Energy Association.

This year, the industry surpassed 12,000 MW of geothermal power operational, with about 600 MW of new geothermal power coming online globally. New geothermal power came on line in Kenya, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Turkey, and Mexico, as well as Oregon, Nevada and Utah in the United States. New project announcements have increased the resource under development to about 30,000 MW.

The international geothermal power industry is poised to place between 500 and 1,000 MW on line per year for the rest of the decade. This year new geothermal geologic studies or exploration moved forward in places as diverse as American Samoa, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Taiwan, Thailand, Uganda, the United States, and Yemen.

Financing was announced for projects in Costa Rica, Dominica, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Tanzania, and the United States, while projects in drilling and start-of-construction phases made headway in Chile, Germany, Guatemala, Italy, Japan, Montserrat, The Philippines, Rwanda, and Zambia.

Trina Solar Signs Investment Framework Agreement to Develop 1 GW Solar Power Plant Project in Xinjiang, Western China

Trina Solar Limited announced that it has signed an investment framework agreement with the local government authority of Turpan Prefecture to develop a 1GW ground-mounted solar power plant project in western China's Xinjiang Region.

Under the agreement, the solar power plants totaling 1GW are scheduled to be built in multiple phases over a four year time frame starting from early 2014. The commencement of each phase of development is subject to certain conditions, including approvals from the local government and State Grid. The first two phases of the project, with installed capacity of 300 MW, are scheduled to be completed and connected to the grid by the end of 2014, subject to receipt of the required approvals. Upon receiving approval for phase one; Trina Solar will also invest in the construction of a PV module production facility in the local area to supply modules to the solar power plants.

Georgia Power Publishes Draft RFP for 2014 Advanced Solar Initiative

Georgia Power announced that it is soliciting proposals through combined Requests for Proposals (RFP) process to fulfill nearly 500 megawatts (MW) of utility-scale solar generation. The RFP includes 70 MW to complete the Georgia Power Advanced Solar Initiative (GPASI) portfolio and 425 MW approved as part of the company's 2013 Integrated Resource Plan (IRP).  The RFP will be conducted with oversight by the Accion Group, Inc., which is serving as the Independent Evaluator for the process.

The company will accept comments on the draft RFP documents through January 31, 2014 and will host a RFP bidder’s conference at the company's Atlanta headquarters on January 13, 2014.

In the fall of 2012, Georgia Power proposed, and the Georgia Public Service Commission (PSC) approved, the company's GPASI program. The GPASI was launched with no regulatory requirement and with a market-based design that does not put upward pressure on customer rates. In 2013, as part of the company's IRP, the PSC approved an additional 525 MW of solar energy to be procured with similar requirements to prevent any upward rate pressures.  

Anaergia Announces Strategic Investment in Large-Scale Biosolids Processing Facility in California

Anaergia Inc., announced it has made a strategic investment in a large-scale biosolids processing facility located in the City of Rialto, CA. Having acquired the infrastructure and assets of the $160 million facility previously owned by EnerTech Environmental Inc., Anaergia plans to improve efficiencies, upgrade technologies and create a state-of-the-art organics processing facility using proven, best-in-class technologies.  These investments will allow Anaergia to expand facility processing capacity in the same footprint, while helping cities manage biosolid challenges and divert organic waste from landfills.

Upgrades to the Rialto Biosolids and Energy Facility are expected to be completed in 2015 and will be centered on the construction of advanced anaerobic digesters that will generate renewable energy for facility operation, reduce the volume of biosolids required for heat drying and enable the acceptance of additional organic waste streams at the site.

The ability to accept organic waste streams from residential, multifamily and commercial sources offers a sustainable solution to cities striving to be proactive to keep waste bills low for taxpayers and comply with state regulations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from waste. Through processing and digesting the organic waste in the anaerobic digesters, significant landfill diversion and cost savings can be achieved.


For more information on Renewable Energy Projects and Update please visit




Headlines for the December 20, 2013 – Utility E-Alert      


#1155– December 20, 2013


Table of Contents







§  MicroCoal® Technologies building Coal Upgrading Facility at Power Plant in Kalimantan, Indonesia



















§  “Selecting FGD Scrubber Materials” was the Hot Topic on December 19, 2013

§  Upcoming Hot Topic Hours



For more information on the Utility Tracking System, click on:




“Air Preheaters and Heat Exchangers” will be the Hot Topic on January 9, 2014

Air preheaters and heat exchangers including condensers, feedwater heaters, economizers and others have played an important role in maintaining the efficiency of power plants for over a hundred years. These days however, air heaters and heat exchangers are increasing the focus of efforts to reduce carbon emissions by increasing plant efficiency, to help reduce emissions of other regulated pollutants and in water scarce areas, to provide plant water by recovering the water in exhaust gases.

Heat exchangers are also now being used in new locations in power plants both to extract more energy from the combustion process and to improve the performance and efficiency of pollution control equipment. For example, placing a second heat exchanger prior to the precipitator to control the temperature of the flue gas can improve fine particulate and SO3 removal. Heat exchangers are also employed to allow an SCR to operate after the particulate control systems to avoid the problems associated with passing heavily particulate laden gases through an SCR. A Gas-to-Gas (GGH) heat exchanger is used to reheat flue gas to 550-650°F before a tail-end SCR then a second heat exchanger recovers some of the heat energy by cooling the gas back to about 250-350°F. A condensing heat exchanger can also be used to condense air toxics out of a flue gas stream.

Other methods to allow heat exchangers to operate more efficiency are also being investigated such as use of ceramic filters ahead of the heat exchanger or addition of chemicals in the gas stream ahead of the exchangers. The ceramic filter would remove particulates as well as SO2 reducing the potential for SO3 caused corrosion. Adding chemicals to the gas stream also eliminates SO3. The net result is that heat exchangers can be operated at lower temperatures significantly improving their efficiency.

The following speakers will discuss issues that should be considered when designing, specifying, acquiring and installing air heaters and heat exchangers, how to determine where and how heat exchangers can be used to best improve efficiency, help reduce pollutant emissions and reduce maintenance issues such as minimizing flyash fouling or scaling and corrosion, describe new applications of heaters and exchangers focused on improving the efficiency of APC equipment to assist mercury and SO3 removal and describe new technology under development or in testing for air heaters and heat exchangers.

John Guffre P.E., Research Scientist, Paragon Airheater Technologies, Inc.

Sterling M. Gray, Manager, SBS Injection Technology, URS Corporation/Advatech, will discuss how to improve thermal energy recovery from air preheaters. Thermal energy recovery by an air preheater is typically limited by the presence of sulfuric acid and other fouling compounds in the flue gas stream.  By eliminating these compounds from the gas upstream of the air preheater, its thermal performance and efficiency can be dramatically improved.  Recent long-term testing by a leading air preheater manufacturer has shown successful operation at flue gas exit temperatures as low as 220oF, providing up to 3 percent improvement in plant heat rate and energy efficiency.  Results from testing and an economic analysis will be presented.

Bob McIlvaine will review the use of condensing heat exchanger in New York, the Hitachi and Mitsubishi heat exchangers used to improve precipitator efficiency in Japan, the potential for the ceramic filter/heat pipe combination and other potential opportunities for more complete heat extraction.

To register for the January 9, 2014 “Hot Topic Hour” on “Air Preheaters & Heat Exchangers” at 10 a.m. (CST) click on: http://www.mcilvainecompany.com/brochures/hot_topic_hour_registration.htm.


McIlvaine Hot Topic Hour Registration

On Thursday at 10 a.m. Central time, McIlvaine hosts a 90 minute web meeting on important energy and pollution control subjects. Power webinars are free for subscribers to either Power Plant Air Quality Decisions or Utility Tracking System. The cost is $125.00 for non-subscribers. Market Intelligence webinars are free to McIlvaine market report subscribers and are $400.00 for non-subscribers.


See below for information on upcoming Hot Topic Hours. We welcome your input relative to suggested additions.




January 9, 2014

Air Pre-Heaters & Heat Exchangers      

 More information

January 16, 2014

Corrosion Issues And Materials For APC Systems      

 More information

February 6, 2014

Review Of EUEC


February 13, 2014

Impact Of Ambient Air Quality Rules On Fossil-Fueled Boilers And Gas Turbines      

 More information

February 27, 2014


NOx Catalyst Performance On Mercury And SO3 


 More information

March 13, 2014

Industrial Boiler Fuel Options: Coal, Biomass Or Gas?

 More information

March 27

Mercury Control And Removal

 More information

April 10

NOx And Ammonia Slip Measurement



On Thursday at 10 a.m. Central time, McIlvaine hosts a 90 minute web meeting on important energy and pollution control subjects. Power webinars are free for subscribers to either Power Plant Air Quality Decisions or Utility Tracking System. The cost is $125.00 for non-subscribers. Market Intelligence webinars are free to McIlvaine market report subscribers and are $400.00 for non-subscribers.

To register for the “Hot Topic Hour”, click on:



You can register for our free McIlvaine Newsletters at: http://www.mcilvainecompany.com/brochures/Free_Newsletter_Registration_Form.htm.


Bob McIlvaine
847 784 0012 ext 112