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An Innovative Boiler Cleaning Method Using a Rotary Cable Swivel Tool

[+] Author Affiliations
Dominic Marra

Montenay-Onyx Power Corporation, Miami, FL

Paper No. NAWTEC12-2222, pp. 161-180; 20 pages
  • 12th Annual North American Waste-to-Energy Conference
  • 12th Annual North American Waste-to-Energy Conference
  • Savannah, Georgia, USA, May 17–19, 2004
  • Conference Sponsors: Solid Waste Processing Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-3736-X
  • Copyright © 2004 by ASME


The boiler generating bank (convective) sections of waste to energy boilers are commonly found to be very limited in regards to personnel access. The Miami-Dade County Resources Recovery Facility has had a challenge in the past to effectively clean this section of the boiler either on line or within a timely manner during outages. In 2003 the company used a new innovative method for cleaning this section off line. The boilers were 100% clean in 1/2 to 1/3 the usual time. The new method involved high-pressure industrial water blasting as typically used, with the exception of the water delivery device/system. Normally the water delivery method involves personnel placed in the boiler with hand held high-pressure water lances. They require confined space monitoring, lighting, scaffolding, proper air supply, frequent breaks, rain suits, full face shields and other PPE for safety inside the boiler. These factors combined with the limited space severely constrain the personnel and their effectiveness when using the water lances. Cleaning is compromised and has led to poor effectiveness and long duration cleanings. Explosives have also been tried to help augment cleaning. The new method used in 2003 involved no personnel in the boiler. Instead, for the water delivery system, a support cable is erected across the boiler upon which a rotary cable swivel tool (CST) is mounted. The tool has connections for high-pressure water and plant air and a simple winch for traversing the tool across the furnace. Very effective cleaning was accomplished from drum to drum, a distance of 20 feet (6.1 m). Depending on the application, the water pressure can be adjusted for maximum effectiveness. The air pressure is also adjusted to control the speed at which the rotary nozzles spin to best match the fouled conditions. The orientation and number of nozzles is also optimized for each application. This paper details the results of using the rotary Cable Swivel Tool (CST) in the generating bank section of the boilers and discusses related operational and maintenance benefits.

Copyright © 2004 by ASME
Topics: Cables , Boilers



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