Title:
Air-cooled condenser
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An air-cooled condenser for the condensation of steam by means of air is described, said air-cooled condenser comprising a steam supply line, at least one upwardly directed pipe bundle, to which the steam to be condensed can be supplied, a condensate drain for the drainage of condensed steam and a fan for the air transport to the pipe bundle. The pipe bundle is arranged below the fan in a sidewall of the air-cooled condenser. Several pipe bundles are thereby arranged in such a way that they form a jacket in the form of a polygon extending in the plumb line, wherein said jacket is closed such that it forms an enclosure on all sides.



Inventors:
Vouche, Michel (Uccle, BE)
Nagel, Phillipe (Wemmel, BE)
Application Number:
11/395151
Publication Date:
11/02/2006
Filing Date:
04/03/2006
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
165/125
International Classes:
F28B9/10; F28B1/06
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
DUONG, THO V
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BakerHostetler (Washington, DC, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. An air-cooled condenser for the condensation of steam by means of air, said air-cooled condenser comprising: a steam supply line; at least one upwardly directed pipe bundle, to which the steam to be condensed can be supplied; a condensate drain for the drainage of the condensed steam; and a fan for the air transport to the pipe bundle, wherein the pipe bundle is arranged below the fan in a sidewall of the air-cooled condenser, and wherein several pipe bundles are arranged in such a way that they form a jacket in the form of a polygon extending in the plumb line, wherein said jacket is closed such that it forms an enclosure on all sides.

2. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 1, wherein the pipe bundle in a sidewall is inclined towards the plumb line in an angle range of ±30°.

3. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 1, wherein the steam to be condensed is guided using at least one riser duct to an upper distribution chamber and from there to the pipe bundles.

4. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 2, wherein the steam to be condensed is guided using at least one riser duct to an upper distribution chamber and from there to the pipe bundles.

5. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 3, further comprising an independent riser duct for every pipe bundle.

6. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 1, wherein an upwardly directed residual steam pipe for the condensation of residual steam is provided from a condensate collection chamber below one of the pipe bundles.

7. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 2, wherein an upwardly directed residual steam pipe for the condensation of residual steam is provided from a condensate collection chamber below one of the pipe bundles.

8. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 3, wherein an upwardly directed residual steam pipe for the condensation of residual steam is provided from a condensate collection chamber below one of the pipe bundles.

9. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 5, wherein an upwardly directed residual steam pipe for the condensation of residual steam is provided from a condensate collection chamber below one of the pipe bundles.

10. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 6, wherein a residual steam drain for the drainage of non-condensed residual steam is provided at the upper end of the residual steam pipe.

11. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 1, wherein the area outside the pipe bundle is hermetically sealed.

12. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 2, wherein the area outside the pipe bundle is hermetically sealed.

13. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 3, wherein the area outside the pipe bundle is hermetically sealed.

14. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 5, wherein the area outside the pipe bundle is hermetically sealed.

15. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 6, wherein the area outside the pipe bundle is hermetically sealed.

16. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 1, wherein the fan is provided with a diffuser.

17. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 2, wherein the fan is provided with a diffuser.

18. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 3, wherein the fan is provided with a diffuser.

19. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 5, wherein the fan is provided with a diffuser.

20. The air-cooled condenser according to claim 6, wherein the fan is provided with a diffuser.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims priority to German Patent Application No. DE 202005005302.3, filed Apr. 4, 2005, all of the disclosure of which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to an air-cooled condenser for the condensation of steam by means of air.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

It is known that air-cooled condensers comprise pipe elements arranged parallel to one another—the so-called pipe bundles to which the steam to be condensed is supplied. In doing so, every two rows of such pipe bundles are usually arranged in such a way that they are inclined against one another at an acute angle in a gabled form. In the lateral view they form a triangular contour, at the base of which a fan is provided for the supply of air to the pipe bundles. The fan transports air, which is cool in comparison to the steam, to the pipe bundles in such a way that a heat exchange takes place, by which steam can condense on the inner edge of every pipe in the pipe bundle.

However, it has been seen that air-cooled condensers of such a triangular design and large cooling capacity have a large space requirement and also require a large installation height, which call for an expensive substructure. In addition, the difficulty in air-cooled condensers is to achieve a uniform distribution of the steam into every pipe bundle.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Therefore the object underlying the invention is to create an air-cooled condenser, using which a large cooling capacity is economically feasible with a small space requirement and cost-effective design and with a uniform distribution of the steam into the pipe bundles.

The object is attained by using an air-cooled condenser, which comprises: a steam supply line, at least one upwardly directed pipe bundle, to which the steam to be condensed can be supplied, a condensate drain for the drainage of the condensed steam, a fan for the air transport through the pipe bundle, wherein the pipe bundle is arranged below the fan in a sidewall of the air-cooled condenser.

The lateral arrangement of the pipe bundles in the sidewalls firstly distinctly reduces the installation height of the air-cooled condenser. Secondly, the pipe bundle weights are no longer arranged at a large installation height, instead at a relatively low installation height, consequently enabling a lighter support structure of the entire air-cooled condenser, which is advantageous economically. In addition, the arrangement of the pipe bundles in the sidewalls of the air-cooled condenser ensures a larger available area for the pipe bundles than in case of a triangular arrangement, in which only the sides of the triangle can be covered with pipe bundles. It is thus possible to achieve a larger cooling capacity of the air-cooled condenser with a low space requirement.

According to another embodiment, several pipe bundles are arranged in such a way that they form a jacket in the form of a polygon extending in the plumb line, wherein said jacket is closed such that it forms an enclosure on all sides. This is advantageous since the entire curved surface of the jacket above the bottom can be used for the pipe bundles.

According to another preferred embodiment, the pipe bundle in a sidewall is inclined towards the plumb line in an angle range of ±30°. Should the inclination have a negative value, for example −30°, the result is a funnel-shaped design of the air-cooled condenser, wherein the cross-sectional area at the lower end (bottom) is smaller than that at the upper end (top). This permits the installation of a fan, which has a larger diameter than the base of the air-cooled condenser. Thus a fan of the largest size possible can be provided in case of a base of a minimum size, consequently achieving the maximum cooling capacity of the air-cooled condenser. The required provisions for a stable design of the associated frame structure are still relatively few within this angle range of ±30°, thus making it possible to implement a frame structure still more cost-effectively.

According to another preferred embodiment of the invention, the steam to be condensed is transportable using a riser duct to an upper distribution chamber and from there to at least one of the pipe bundles. Such a design enables a better compensation of thermal expansions due to temperature differences between the riser duct and the pipe bundles than in case of a design in which the steam is supplied to the pipe bundles directly without a riser duct. The design, which has a “U”-shape, can carry out larger deformations elastically.

According to another preferred embodiment of the invention, at least one upwardly directed residual steam pipe for the condensation of residual steam is provided from a condensate collection chamber below one of the pipe bundles. The residual steam pipe serves for the separation of steam and inert gases.

According to another preferred embodiment of the invention, a residual steam drain for the drainage of the insert gases including the non-condensed residual steam is provided at the upper end of the residual steam pipe.

According to another preferred embodiment of the invention, the area outside the pipe bundles is hermetically sealed. This ensures that the air transported by the fan only flows through the pipe bundles.

According to another preferred embodiment of the invention, the fan is provided with a diffuser. This enables an increase in the degree of efficiency of the fan.

There has thus been outlined, rather broadly, certain embodiments of the invention in order that the detailed description thereof herein may be better understood, and in order that the present contribution to the art may be better appreciated. There are, of course, additional embodiments of the invention that will be described below and which will form the subject matter of the claims appended hereto.

In this respect, before explaining at least one embodiment of the invention in detail, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited in its application to the details of construction and to the arrangements of the components set forth in the following description or illustrated in the drawings. The invention is capable of embodiments in addition to those described and of being practiced and carried out in various ways. Also, it is to be understood that the phraseology and terminology employed herein, as well as the abstract, are for the purpose of description and should not be regarded as limiting.

As such, those skilled in the art will appreciate that the conception upon which this disclosure is based may readily be utilized as a basis for the designing of other structures, methods and systems for carrying out the several purposes of the present invention. It is important, therefore, that the claims be regarded as including such equivalent constructions insofar as they do not depart from the spirit and scope of the present invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

In the following the invention is explained in more detail on the basis of embodiments illustrated in the drawing. The figures schematically illustrate:

FIG. 1 a front-view of a first embodiment of the inventive air-cooled condenser;

FIG. 2 a horizontal cross-section of the first embodiment, shown in FIG. 1, of the inventive air-condenser along the line 1-1; and

FIG. 3 a perspective view of a second embodiment of the inventive air-cooled condenser.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

As is apparent from FIG. 1 and FIG. 2, steam is supplied to the inventive air-cooled condenser 1 using a supply line 2. The steam thereby flows upwards by means of one or more riser ducts 3 and is distributed using distribution lines 4 into a respective distribution chamber 5. It should be pointed out that only one riser duct is illustrated in FIG. 2. The distribution lines are indicated only schematically in FIG. 2; they can be further expanded or divided into several lines toward the distribution chamber 5.

The distribution chambers 5 are arranged in the upper region of the air-cooled condenser. Below the distribution chambers 5, pipe bundles are arranged, which are indicated schematically using the reference numeral 6. 1, 2 or more pipe bundles can be provided to each sidewall 18 corresponding to the diameter of the fan. The hot steam in the pipe bundles condenses due to the heat exchange with the air flowing past the pipes.

The liquid condensed in the pipe bundles flows downwards along the pipe walls and is collected in a condensate collection chamber 7, which is arranged below a pipe bundle. From the condensate collection chamber 7, a condensate drain 20 flows outwards away from the air-cooled condenser.

The remaining residual steam and also the inert gases are guided upwards into a residual steam pipe 8 from the condensate collection chamber 7. The pipe bundle 6 thus represents a primary part, while the residual steam pipe 8 forms the secondary part. Furthermore, it is evident that the secondary part 8 can also be embodied as a pipe bundle.

The air stream 12 flows around the secondary part 8 just as the primary part 6, thus enabling the condensation of one more portion of the residual steam in the secondary part 8. This portion flows back into the condensate collection chamber 7 while the non-condensed portion including the inert gases arrives at the upper end of the secondary part 8 into a residual steam chamber 9. From there residual steam and inert gases are discharged from the air-cooled condenser 1 using a residual steam line 10, which is illustrated schematically as a dashed line in FIG. 1.

A secondary part 8 can be provided in every pipe bundle of the air-cooled condenser 1. An air-cooled condenser thus also comprises several residual steam chambers 9, from which residual steam is discharged outwards. It is expedient to couple the residual steam lines 10 to one another, which depart from the respective residual steam chambers 9.

In the air-cooled condenser 1 illustrated in FIG. 1 and FIG. 2, the pipe bundles are arranged in the sidewalls 18. Several sidewalls thereby form a jacket 13 in the form of a polygon extending in the plumb line and illustrated in the figures in the form of a hexagon, wherein said jacket is closed such that it forms an enclosure on all sides. The previously described arrangement for a sidewall 18 is repeated in the sidewalls adjoining thereto, so as to achieve a symmetrical design of the air-cooled condenser 1. A uniform air passage through all the sidewalls can thus be achieved by means of the fan 11. The previously described polygon design of the jacket 13 can also be changed in such a way that the corners are present in a rounded form, thus achieving a round or almost circular geometry of the jacket 13 in the top view of the air-cooled condenser 1. This can be advantageous for a uniform through-flow of the pipe bundles 6.

In order to increase the suction effect of the fan 11, the latter can be provided with a diffuser 19.

A second embodiment of the invention is illustrated in FIG. 3. It schematically illustrates a hexagonal air-cooled condenser 1, which however has no riser duct for the supply of steam, unlike the first embodiment. Here, the steam is directly supplied into the upper region of the air-cooled condenser, where it can arrive from the distribution chambers 5 to the pipe bundles (not illustrated here). This can be advantageous if a steam supply line from an industrial unit connected upstream is already present in the upper region of an air-cooled condenser, as a result of which a diversion of the steam in the lower region of the air-cooled condenser 1 would only represent an unnecessary circuitous route.

The many features and advantages of the invention are apparent from the detailed specification, and thus, it is intended by the appended claims to cover all such features and advantages of the invention which fall within the true spirit and scope of the invention. Further, since numerous modifications and variations will readily occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation illustrated and described, and accordingly, all suitable modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, falling within the scope of the invention.