Electric Power Generation is done at central generating stations in a variety of ways, in a variety of different types of facilities.Chemetron has very extensive experience in this field dating from its first installations in 1940.The largest power generators are steam electric plants wherein the fuels can be nuclear, fossil, or refuse based.
Chemetron installed systems in over 75 nuclear fueled units worldwide with emphasis on the protection of electrical control facilities (cable areas, switchgear and controls). Many of these systems are still operating with the systems continuing to provide vital protection. Protection of the Turbine Generator Lube Oil System and Exciter, as well as the Emergency Generators, was also a common part of the scope of protection provided by Chemetron systems.
The first four (4) Chemetron (then Cardox) installations (1940/41) provided protection of coal fired plants - three of these systems are still in operation (after some upgrades). Again, the protection centered around key electrical facilities and the turbine lube oil system. As the years passed protection requirements were extended to hazards created by the coal system. First of all, there was a need to inert the coal pulverizers on start-up and during unscheduled shutdowns to prevent internal explosions. Then came concern for dealing with the spontaneous heating of the coal stored in the plant silos/bunkers. In 1953 the inerting procedures used today were tested and adopted. Today, with the ever increasing use of Powder River Basin (PRB) coal, which is very reactive, silo/bunker inerting with CO2 still offers the best solution for unmanned inerting to achieve fire control.
Peaking Stations – Combined Cycle Plants
Years ago the "GREAT NORTHEAST POWER BLACKOUT" established that there had to be some power generation on the system before the system could be brought back on line. Gas turbine driven generators, capable of a black start, were installed and proven to be essential. Furthermore, they could do a good job of providing "peaking power" when the load on the system tended toward overloading the regular generating capacity.
Cardox/Chemetron pioneered protection methods for these units that led to ever improving gas turbine power generators. For years Chemetron has been at the forefront in the development and implementation of reliable/effective combustion turbine fire protection worldwide. Protection of the Turbine Compartments is essential due to the susceptibility of the bearing lube oil system to fire. Cardox/Chemetron pioneered the protection methods on which current standards are based.
Probably the start of true large scale electric power generation began when rivers were dammed and the water in the trapped reservoir was channeled thru large tubes to a turbine in the associated power house in order to turn a water wheel that was coupled with an electric generator. Rain running downhill provided the power that gave us electric lights. In addition to the generator requiring fire protection (NFPA #851), there maybe Governor Cabinets that also require protection. In addition, protection is required for the Lube Oil storage areas and the Electrical Rooms. A Chemetron central fire control system can serve all these protection needs.
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