Flue Gas Cleaning

Electrostatic precipitator: high-voltage, diverse and environmentally friendly

The function of dust separation in electrostatic precipitators is based on an electric field that is built up between the high-voltage discharging electrodes and the earthed collecting plates. When flue gas flows through the electrostatic precipitator, the dust particles become electrically charged and are collected at the plates through the effect of the electric field. Fine dust can be removed very successfully from the gas in this manner.

Dry Electrostatic precipitators are mostly built horizontally and can vary in size, depending on their purpose. For dust separation behind a large coal-fired power station, an electrostatic precipitator can reach half the size of a football pitch. Smaller electrostatic precipitators are installed behind biomass-fired boilers in the timber industry or in waste incineration plants. Electrostatic precipitators are also used advantageously in industrial applications where no flue gases from combustion processes need to be treated. In various areas of the steel industry, in sinter cooler systems, in room and converter dedusting and in arc and blast furnaces, electrostatic dust separation also makes sense. In resource recovery processes, for example in cement plants, coal refining plants or chemical and petrochemical plants, electrostatic dedusting plays a valuable role by recycling the precipitated product.  

In plants with large quantities of dust we achieve efficient separation rates of well over 99.95%. This means that we achieve a clean gas dust content that is well below 10 mg/Nm3. Values that are noticeably below the common guidelines on emissions protection, and which also recommend the electrostatic separation technology for the future. A particular advantage of the technology is the low pressure loss and thus the low energy requirements of the plant. 

The high voltage used in the electrostatic precipitator affects only the solid matter in the flue gas and can be controlled on demand. This drastically reduces energy consumption during off-peak plant operation and when the dust can be easily separated.

The collecting plates, made from profiled steel sheets and up to 16 metres in height, and the discharge electrodes carrying the high voltage, in the form of welded pipe constructions, are robust and unbreakable – malfunctions caused by broken electrodes belong in the past. Cleaning takes place fully automatically by means of a robust tumble hammer system. All bearings of the internal rotating parts are specially protected. Low flue gas flow rates of approx. 1m/s prevent erosion of the electrostatic precipitator internals. The result: more robust, low-wear operation with high availibilities and low maintenance and servicing requirements.

With impressive values, the most modern lignite fired power station in the world, in Neurath (Germany), demonstrates the advantages of electric dedusting. The high-voltage units of the electrostatic separator are designed for a maximum total output of 5,500 kW. Thanks to our intelligent output control, with controlled clean gas dust content, we require only 750 kW of power, thus saving more than 85 % of energy.

Advantages of the electrostatic precipitator technology

  • High levels of dust separation of over 99.95%

  • Low clean gas dust content of < 10mg/Nm3
  • Low pressure loss
  • Energy-optimised plant operation, adapted to the clean gas dust content
  • Robust and reliable technology
  • Operation at high temperatures of up to 450° C
  • High volume flows of up to 4.5 million Nm3/h can be achieved
  • High availabilities with low maintenance and servicing requirements
  • Diverse application areas in all sectors of industry and energy generation
  • Reliable electrical charging thanks to unbreakable discharge electrodes
The plates of the electrostatic separator are cleaned by means of a tumble hammer system

The plates of the electrostatic separator are cleaned by means of a tumble hammer system

The most modern lignite fired power station in the world in Neurath, 2 x 1,100 MW

The most modern lignite fired power station in the world in Neurath, 2 x 1,100 MW

View of an electrostatic precipitator from below

View of an electrostatic precipitator from below

Steinmüller Babcock Environment GmbH

Fabrikstraße 1

D-51643 Gummersbach, Germany

+49 (0) 2261 85 - 0

+49 (0) 2261 85 - 2999