Air compressors perform many roles at power plants in the process of power generation, transmission, and distribution. Atlas Copco oil-free screw and centrifugal air compressors and gas compressors offer unrivalled reliability and low maintenance costs.
The air system in a thermal power plant is divided into instrument air and service air.
Power plant – service air
Service air is required for the cleaning, purging of filters, and for ash transportation in coal, gas, nuclear or hydro power plants, as well as the newer generation geothermal or concentrated solar power plants. Some examples of use are:
- Pneumatic conveying for fly ash, limestone, and mill rejects
- Silo fluidisation for ash handling plants
- Fuel gas boosting (FGB) for gas power plants
- Purge and atomising air for dual fuel gas power plants
- Supercritical CO2 (sCO2) for all power plants
- Nitrous oxide treatment
- Cooling turbines and reactor cores
- Desulphurisation and soot blowing
Service compressed air quality requirements are not as stringent as those of instrument air.
Power plant – instrument air
As the name suggests, instrument air is used to operate pneumatic devices where the quality of compressed air is of paramount importance. A steady and consistent supply of compressed air allows for precise control of valve operations and air power tools used for on-site maintenance of assets and equipment.
Instrument air in power plants must be oil-free and moisture-free. Atlas Copco oil-free air compressors deliver 100% clean air, exceeding your requirements.
Safety considerations in power generation
A further benefit of oil-free compressors is safety: oil-free compressors ensure zero residual oil in the pipeline, thereby eliminating the risk of oil fumes and fire, and ensuring safety levels at the plant.