Definition of Boiler and Various Types of Steam Boiler or Steam Generator

Steam is important element for producing mechanical energy. We are using steam from very beginning of our industrial revolution. Steam has some great advantage like we can generate steam from water which is available at any place and it does not participate any chemical reaction with any others particle in power plant.

Water can stay stable at a fixed temperature in power plant. Steam use in a power plant for driving a steam engine and a steam turbine. This type of power plant called Thermal Power Plant. In a thermal power plant, steam pressure range start form 10kg/cm2 to super critical pressure and temperature varies from 250oC to 650oC. In this post I will discuss about the Steam Boiler or Steam Generator With its Types.

Boiler or Steam Generator
Boiler or Steam Generator. Source

Definition of Boiler:

It is a closed pressure vessel and inside this vessel any liquid or water heated by another heat source and convert this liquid and water to steam. Now generated steam when use for another purpose which is outside from the main vessel then it will called a boiler. Primary generated steam can contain humidity level from 0.5% to 5%. Then a super heater and re-heater use to heat primary steam to make full steam that can use in power plant operation.

Related: Advantage and Disadvantage of Water Tube Boiler

Water use in boiler and it must be clean and soft. There are several chemical uses for making hard water to soft water. This soft water called boiler freed water. If water contains dust then it will create Scaling inside the boiler drum and tube. This Scaling will decrease the boiler steam temperature and could damage the entire boiler.

If we sent primary steam to the steam engine and steam turbine then it will create corrosion with the component like turbine blade. For this reason water supply for boiler always maintain by various water treatment and generated steam use to re-heat again before sending it to steam engine and steam turbine.

Main heat source for a steam boiler can be fossil fuel like Coal, Natural GAS, Oil. Electricity and Nuclear energy also use to generate steam from a steam boiler. Generated Steam supply to outside by a non-returnable valve system. When steam is coming from boiler then make up freed water always supply to the boiler.

Various Type of Steam Boiler or Steam Generator:

At first I want to define Steam Boiler or Steam Generator. Steam Boiler or Steam Generator is seemlier with a boiler which use to generate steam but vessel use in Steam Boiler or Steam Generator which is not a pressure vessel according by the definition. Steam Generator use for generating electricity in power plant, hot water supply, Train and Ship.

Related: Basic Operation of a Power Plant With its Importance

Types of Steam Generator:

A. Water and Fire Gas Flow

  1. Fire Tube Boiler
  2. Water Tube Boiler

B. Condition of Furnace

  1. Internal Combustion Boiler
  2. External Combustion Boiler

C. According to the Main Axis

  1. Vertical Boiler
  2. Horizontal Boiler
  3. Inclined Boiler

D. By Installation

  1. Stationary Boiler
  2. Portable Boiler

E. By Number of Drum

  1. With Single Drum
  2. With Two or Above Drum

F. By Water Supply

  1. Natural Water Circulation
  2. Forced Water Circulation

G. By Steam Pressure

  1. Low Pressure Boiler
  2. Medium Pressure Boiler
  3. High Pressure Boiler

H. By Manufacturer Name

1. Water Tube Boiler

i) Babcock or Wilcox Boiler

ii) La-mont Boiler

iii) Benson Boiler

iv) Loeffler Boiler

v) Velox Boiler

2. Fire Tube Boiler

i) Lancashire Boiler

ii) Locomotive Boiler

iii) Scotch Marine Boiler

iv) Vertical Boiler

v) Cornish Boiler

Related: Why Boiler Explode and How to Prevent Explosion

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