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Automated, On-Line Loss-on-Ignition (LOI) Sensor

[+] Author Affiliations
James A. Bickford, Michael Y. Feng, Mitchell Hansberry, Daniel Harjes, Eric Balles

The Charles Stark Draper Laboratory, Inc., Cambridge, MA

Joe Estrada

Progress Energy, St. Petersburg, FL

Chris Hill, Bill Kirkenir

Progress Energy, Raleigh, NC

Paper No. ICONE20-POWER2012-54238, pp. 629-638; 10 pages
  • 2012 20th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering and the ASME 2012 Power Conference
  • Volume 4: Codes, Standards, Licensing, and Regulatory Issues; Fuel Cycle, Radioactive Waste Management and Decommissioning; Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and Coupled Codes; Instrumentation and Controls; Fuels and Combustion, Materials Handling, Emissions; Advanced Energy Systems and Renewables (Wind, Solar, Geothermal); Performance Testing and Performance Test Codes
  • Anaheim, California, USA, July 30–August 3, 2012
  • Conference Sponsors: Nuclear Engineering Division, Power Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4498-4
  • Copyright © 2012 by ASME


Draper Laboratory has developed a prototype, automated system that measures on-line loss-on-ignition (LOI) in coal power plants. The system automatically extracts fly ash samples via a sample probe inserted into the flue gas stream and delivers them to an integrated thermo-gravimetric-analyzer (TGA) that analyzes the sample’s LOI according to the ASTM C311 standard. The integrated TGA is custom designed and built to be rugged and low cost relative to a laboratory grade instrument and can analyze samples every fifteen minutes. This LOI sensor is a major improvement in time and spatial resolution over the commonplace method of sampling fly ash from the bag house and sending it offsite for analysis. During field tests at actual power plants, the prototype system acquired ash samples and analyzed them while unattended. A proposed redesign for commercialization is also described.

Copyright © 2012 by ASME
Topics: Sensors , Ignition



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