TransAlta Energy Cogeneration, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
The Benefits of MeeFog Technology:
- Fog provided the amount of cooling required at a tiny fraction of the cost of a chiller upgrade
- Ability to sell power for as much as ten times the regular rate
- A power boost of 3 MW per machine (a 6% gain)
The plant’s existing 800-ton absorption chiller proved to be too small for the task of cooling inlet air. The facility couldn’t boost power production sufficiently during the hot summer months and this curtailed facility profitability.
Economic costs precluded the addition of a larger chiller system, because the plant needed about 1600 tons of chilling per unit to provide enough inlet air cooling. Thus, TransAlta decided to install fog.
TransAlta Energy Cogeneration
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
TransAlta operates two GE LM 6000 aeroderivative, base-loaded turbines (each rated at 42 MW). Essentially, TransAlta sells electricity to a local utility. In addition, it provides steam, compressed air, demineralized water and emergency standby power to a nearby manufacturing facility.
Inlet air cooling is not required from November through March due to low overall temperatures. However, during the summer months, temperatures climb. TransAlta’s interest in fog cooling is based on the fact that gas turbine power drops with increasing ambient temperatures.
The plant’s existing 800-ton absorption chiller proved to be too small for the task of cooling inlet air and therefore the facility was losing power production during the summer. Economic costs precluded the addition of a larger chiller system, because the plant needed about 1600 tons of chilling per unit to provide enough inlet air cooling. TransAlta decided to install fog.
“With our absorption chiller, we were only getting about 25 percent cooling capacity per machine,” said the plant manager. “We chose fog as it is a lot cheaper to install and run than a chiller.”
Putting it to the Test
TransAlta installed a MeeFog™ system. The design used incorporates 224 impaction-pin nozzles and the system operates at 2,000 psi with a maximum fog water flow rate of 5.0 gpm per turbine. Each turbine has a 10 hp pump unit. Temperature and humidity sensors help provide the system’s four stages of cooling.
The installed fog boosts the output of the combustion turbines during hot days. And as a result, combustion turbine operators have more power as demand soars, and spot prices are at their peak, sometimes selling for ten times the regular rate.
“We’re very happy with fog and count on it for the extra power,” said the plant manager. “Depending on ambient conditions, we can get about 2-3 MW per machine-a 6% gain.”
As the system isn’t required in winter, the company winterizes it with the onset of colder temperatures. But even if there is a sudden rise in temperature in the late fall, the plant manager is able to rapidly bring the MeeFog™ system back online to provide another burst of power augmentation.
“We start-up the cooling systems in April and shut down in November,” said the plant manager. “After winterizing the fog we’ve gone ahead and run it again in a late fall heat wave, the final shut down and freeze protection doesn’t take long.”
About Mee Industries Inc.
Mee Industries Inc. is the innovative, high technology corporation that provides highly customized, cost-effective fog solutions for a wide range of applications including gas turbine inlet air cooling. Founded in 1969 by former Cornell University Research Scientist, Thomas Mee Jr., today the company also specializes in revolutionary fog solutions for industrial humidification, outdoor air conditioning, greenhouse climate control, wine barrel humidification and unique special effects applications.
Renowned MeeFog™ turnkey solutions include meticulously designed and engineered, premium quality, integrated systems that deliver an unequaled combination of price and performance. Mee Industries products are backed by our experienced staff of technical personnel including leading researchers, project managers and engineers along with production and installation specialists. An active research and development division ensures our position of technological leadership in the fog system market. Mee Industries is a proud ISO 9001 certified corporation and manufactures components to meet exacting UL or CE requirements.
Mee Industries is a privately held company with corporate headquarters in Irwindale, Calfornia.