Maintaining clean condenser tubes is of vital importance for reliable, efficient power generation. Two major problems result from substances on the interior of tube surfaces: (1) Loss of heat transfer, and (2) Under-deposit corrosion. Internal tube fouling is nearly always detrimental to heat transfer, thus reducing the efficiency of steam condensing, resulting in a lower vacuum (higher pressure) and less efficient steam turbine operation. Under-deposit corrosion of tube material can result in through-wall leaks, permitting ingress of cooling water into high purity steam condensate. Because poor vacuum conditions in the condenser can reduce electric generating capacity, and contaminants in steam condensate can cause significant damage to boiler tubing and steam turbine materials, measures to prevent fouling or remove foulants must be applied. Early identification of fouling characteristics and a fundamental knowledge of cleaning system capabilities are essential in determining the most effective cleaning technology. Unique circumstances may require innovative solutions. The common causes of condenser tube fouling and the practical application and innovation of cleaning technology are discussed. State-of-the-Art methods for off-line mechanical tube cleaning are presented, and their effects on tube condition examined.

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