New plant designs and technological developments in the power industry are leading to greater efficiency in converting fossil fuels to energy. Leveraging these technologies (once-through boilers, for example) allows plants to operate at higher temperatures and higher pressure, which increases the energy output while decreasing the amount of fuel required. This has allowed many new plants to attain efficiency measurements nearing 50%. This is important, not only to optimize the running of the plant, but due to the reduced amount of fuel required, increasing the efficiency 1% can lead to a reduction in CO2 emissions of 3%.
In the effort to improve efficiency, power plants must guard carefully against any issues that can impede their progress or lead to plant downtime. Continuous monitoring of ultra-low levels of silica in locations throughout the plant helps to manage power plant efficiency and reduce downtime by avoiding costly plant shutdowns and repairs. Continuous on-line silica analyzers provide dependable monitoring and protect against the introduction of harmful levels of silica into the steam cycle.