Air Cooled Heat Exchangers

Air Cooled Steam Condenser

In modern steam power generating plants, air cooled steam condensers are used to condense the exhaust steam from the turbine into the steam condenser at constant pressure and temperature.

Air cooled steam condenser comprises of tube bundles with circular finned tubes fixed at a height on a “A” frame structure. Axial flow fans mounted at the lower vertex of the ‘A’ frame blow the cooler air at ambient temperature into the ‘A’ frame. When the air passes through the finned tube bundles, it will cool the medium inside the finned tubes or condenses the steam inside the tube by reducing the latent heat.

Air cooled condenser comprises cells / modules / bays. Each cell consists of the following equipment:

  1. Steam Manifold / Steam Duct from Turbine exhaust flange to the ACC.
  2. A Frame structure supporting the Tube Bundles
  3. Finned tube bundles
  4. Axial flow fan arrangement with gearbox and motor
  5. Fan fixing and protecting assembly with guards, inlet bell
  6. Condensate tank with pumps
  7. Ejector for the extraction of the non-condensable gases from the tube bundles
  8. Hot well drain tank with pumps
  9. Piping with valves and instruments as per the requirements
  10. Instrumentation and electrical (as per the ACC operational philosophy)
  11. Wind wall for prevention of the air recirculation
  12. Instrumentation and control system for all above

Main Components of Air Cooled Steam Condensing Systems

Steam Duct

A steam duct allows turbine exhaust steam to flow to the steam distribution system – it includes expansion joints, anchor points, elbows and duct supports. The steam duct system connects the condenser inlet-steam manifold to the turbine exhaust flange.

Finned Tube Bundles

Tube Bundle construction is rigid and self-supporting in nature. Tube bundle consist of two headers, each at one end and connected with finned tubes. Tubes are usually made of Carbon steel tubes SA214 (ERW) but not restricted to this material of construction and fins of aluminium.

Typical design of tube bundle is either of the Single or Multi-rows tube design with a two pass arrangement of fluid through the tubes. The steam is condensed in the Condensing section of Bundles (referred as K Bundles) and the non-condensable gasses are extracted from the Dephlegmator Section (referred to as D-Bundles).

Single Row Tube Bundles

  • Large area
  • Anti-Freezing
  • Low Pressure loss

Multi-Row Tube Bundles

  • High Heat Transfer Coefficient
  • Various type of fin configurations are available e.g. fins like KL,L,LL ,Extruded Fins.


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