Frequent question: How do steam condensers affect the total operation of a steam power plant?

Generation loss is severely affected by condenser pressure. … An increase in condenser pressure will tend to cause the end point enthalpy to rise, leads to reduction in power generation. The increase in heat rate is due to the higher steam flow required to maintain load with the increase of condenser pressure.

What is the role of condenser in a steam power plant?

In thermal power plants, the purpose of a surface condenser is to condense the exhaust steam from a steam turbine to obtain maximum efficiency, and also to convert the turbine exhaust steam into pure water (referred to as steam condensate) so that it may be reused in the steam generator or boiler as boiler feed water.

How does condenser improve performance of steam power plant?

Condensers increase the enthalpy drops and turbine work by lowering the turbine outlet pressure. The lower the pressure, the higher the efficiency and power are. … As seen in equations 1 and 2, to maximize the thermal efficiency and power, the enthalpy drop in the turbine must be increased.

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What is the advantage of condensing the steam?

The main advantages of incorporating a steam condenser in a steam power plant are as follows: It increases the efficiency of the power plant due to increased enthalpy drop. It reduces back pressure of the steam which results in more work output.

How do steam condensers work?

A steam condenser is a mechanical device employed to condense exhaust steam of the turbine into the water. It conducts this process with the help of cooling water that circulates inside it from the cooling tower. The pressure within a steam condenser is held below the atmospheric pressure to enhance efficiency.

Which condenser is more suitable for high power capacity plants?


The surface condenser is the type most commonly used in modern power plants and hence it will be the only one taken into consideration. Here, the main heat transfer takes place at the outside of the tube, thereby cooling vis-a-vis condensing of the saturated steam, and hence heating of the CW inside the tube.

What is the function of the condenser?

The function of the condenser in a refrigeration system is to transfer heat from the refrigerant to another medium, such as air and/or water. By rejecting heat, the gaseous refrigerant condenses to liquid inside the condenser.

What makes a condenser more efficient?

Reducing cooling water temperatures is a sure-fire way to improve condenser performance: A decrease in cooling water temperature of 10 degrees F can improve the overall heat rate of a power plant by 1%.

What are the factors affecting the condenser performance?

The parameters that are responsible for condenser thermal performance are cooling water (CW) mass flow rate, temperature, heat transfer area, velocity, tube fouling, partially filled water box and air leakage. CW flow rate and condenser pressure changes according to the variation in unit load.

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Why is a lower cooling water temperature entering the condenser important to power plant operation?

The steam power plant strongly depends on its low pressure end operating conditions, where the condenser is the key for the heat exchange. … The smaller the cooling water flow rate for a given cooling water inlet temperature, the higher will be the condenser pressure.

Why majority of the steam power plants employ high vacuum surface condensers?

In other words, it is impossible to prevent the entrance of air and other non-condensable gases into the condenser. A vacuum is maintained in the condenser so that steam can easily flow and more work can be extracted from the steam in the turbine; this is the reason why vacuum is maintained in condensers.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of installing a condenser in a steam power plant?


  • The condensate can be used as boiler feed water.
  • Cooling water of even poor quality can be used because the cooling water does not come in direct contact with steam.
  • High vacuum (about 73.5 cm of Hg) can be obtained in the surface condenser. …
  • The capital cost is more.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of condensers?

Advantages and Disadvantages of Air cooled condensers

  • Air cooled condensers are simple in operation.
  • They are smaller in size.
  • Required maintenance of air cooled condensers is low.
  • Cleaning process is easy.
  • Installation cost is comparatively less.
  • Design of air cooled condensers are less complex.