Home Business “Chimney” failure shuts Kusile Unit one

“Chimney” failure shuts Kusile Unit one

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Cooling towers at a coal-based power station owned by state power utility Eskom in Duhva, South Africa, February 18, 2020. REUTERS/Mike Hutchings

Eskom says investigations are underway following a flue gas duct [FGD] – or chimney – failure at Kusile Power Station’s unit one.

The power utility said the failure occurred last month while the unit was on a forced shutdown for repairs.

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Kusile Power Station. Photo by Matshela Koko on Twitter

“Investigations and assessments are in progress to establish the cause of failure and to ascertain the extent of the damage, as well as the recovery scope of work. While it is uncertain at this point, it is anticipated the unit may remain offline for a few months and this duration shall become clearer over the next few weeks. Access to the area has also been restricted as part of precautionary measures.

“Consultations with various specialist stakeholders, including the Original Equipment Manufacturer, are in progress to determine best course of action to restore the plant as quickly as possible,” the company said.

Eskom explained that as a result of the failure, Kusile’s unit two has been put offline as a precautionary measure.

“The failed section of the Unit 1 flue gas duct [FGD] is located inside the flue chimney. The ducts are made from steel sections welded together and surrounded by a windshield, which is made of reinforced concrete that also houses the Unit 2 and Unit 3 flue gas ducts.

“Unit 2 was off load at the time while Unit 3 was generating electricity. Unit 4, whose FGD duct is housed on a separate flue chimney, is currently on load, generating full load to the national grid.

“As part of precautionary measures put in place, the return to service of Unit 2 has been put on hold while Unit 3 continues to run at stable load,” Eskom said. – SAnews

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