MTORS ConferenceChicago

Annual Conference Sponsors
Platinum Sponsor


Founding Members

Special Partner


Topics of interest:

Þ Ultra-supercritical units

Þ Carbon capture

Þ Coal quality and its effect on boiler combustion

Þ Coal blending

Þ Environmental Impact Assessments

Þ Environmental issues and emerging challenges

Þ Condition based monitoring

Þ Bag filters (reference ESP operation and maintenance)

Þ Intake obstructions—A jellyfish case study from TNB

Þ Conversion



Email your 200 – 300 word abstract to Kim Arellano at


2012 Conference Program:

Day 1 - Sessions
Day 2 - Coal Handling Breakouts
Day 2 - Boiler & Combustions Breakouts
Day 3 - Generating Companies Only Morning Session


Asian SBC Users' Group Meeting Day one session will consist of conversion presentation and Fire, Safety and Security of the use of sub-bituminous coal.

US Powder River Basin Costs and Links to the World
Chris Newman, Coal Transportation Ed, Argus Media Inc.

Low mining costs and established logistical links are allowing the US Powder River Basin to export more of its nearly half billion-ton market. What are the costs and options for terminals and routing, and which ports are shippers turning to first to export? How do US exporters overcome the higher costs of the hauls to Asia now and in the future, and longer term when can significant new export capacity on the West Coast be expected?

Procurement Cost Competitiveness of Ultra Low-Energy Subbituminous Coals
Michael Fell, VP Coal Consulting, Wood Mackenzie
Susie Wood

A. External macro environment (Global seaborne thermal coal markets): • Overview of the existing and projected market to 2030 • Identify drivers for global thermal coal trade over the long term B. Low energy coal market outlook (ultra low-energy sub-bituminous coals <4,200 kcal/kg gar): • Supply outlook to 2020, focused on Indonesia and its competitors • Target market analysis of key low energy coal growth markets C. Market growth drivers and enablers and longer term strategic themes: • Long term low energy coal market scenarios: • Ocean freight and mining cost impacts • Delivered pricing in target markets and key logistics constraints • Potential for “switchover” by customers • Value drivers for users, and alternate uses to power generation • Interviews with buyers to determine their requirements, constraints facing them, and drivers/enablers for “switchover” D. Strategic product channel options and procurement strategy development • Current and potential product sales channels trade channels (traders, customers, etc) • Contractual sales frameworks • End-user procurement strategies and behaviors.

Developing a CBM Program at Westar
Mark Mayworm, Director Generation Support, Westar Energy

Catastrophic equipment failures at power generation facilities can result in costly repairs and forced outages resulting in lost revenue. These outages can damage the reputation of power providers whose primary objective is to deliver high quality, reliable, and uninterrupted power at the lowest cost to consumers. This presentation will describe how Westar Energy implemented a Condition Based Monitoring (CBM) program across its fleet of energy centers. The advantages and benefits of each technology will be discussed along with considerations one might contemplate if deploying a program at their site. Additionally, case histories from actual finds will also be covered in detail.

Managing the Risks Associated with Mill Fires, Puffs and Explosions while firing Subbituminous Coals
Richard Storm, President, Innovative Combustion Technologies, Inc.

The pulverizer or mills in a coal fired utility power plant are required to condition coal for proper combustion and deliver all (100%) of the fuel (coal) to the boiler. Because of this, the pulverizers or mills are one if not the most important grouping of auxiliary equipment that have profound influence on unit reliability, performance, capacity as well as the ability to generate power economically. The pulverizer or mills also an ever-present risk center to safety. This is especially true while firing high moisture and highly reactive subbituminous coals which are more prone to mill fires and puffs. This presentation will provide insight into why subbituminous coals are more predisposed to mill fires and puffs and how to manage that risk through operating and maintenance practices. In addition to operating and maintenance practices that can reduce the risk of mill fires and puffs, new methods and technologies for mill inerting, mill fire suppression and mill outlet temperature management will be discussed in detail.

Mitigating Measures to Overcome Problems with the Increasing Use of LCV Coal
Danny Lau, Hongkong Electric Company LTD
L.M. Chiu, Hongkong Electric Company LTD
Tommy H.N. Fu, Hongkong Electric Company LTD

There are a number of benefits with the use of Low Calorific Value (LCV) Coal. However, this type of coal also presents a number of problems to the users such as increased fire risk, heavier coal spillage and fugitive-dust emission, and de-rating of the generation units. These problems must be mitigated to prevent any catastrophic failure of coal handling and combustion equipment. In Lamma Power Station, the coal-yard operations have been re-engineered and some coal burning equipment has been modified to cater for the increased use of LCV coal. Our experiences in these aspects are presented in this paper.

GTL Energy Coal Upgrading – Technology Development to Deployment
Blake Williams, CFO and Director, GTL Energy Limited (GTLE)

GTLE is commissioning its first third-party commercial facility, owned by Solid Energy New Zealand (SENZ) in the third quarter of 2012. This plant is the initial phase of SENZ development of its Southland Lignite, and will be used for domestic supply and export trials to support further market development. It is a significant milestone in GTLE’s proof of technology, including demonstrating the transportability, handling and market acceptance of GTLE briquette products. GTLE is actively progressing projects for deployment of its technology in Indonesia, USA, China and Australia. Blake Williams, CFO and Board Member of GTLE, will provide a brief overview of the recent activities to bring this first-mover project online, and outline the plan for further large scale commercial deployment for GTLE’s unique technology.

Coal Blending
Rod Hatt, Chief Technical Officer, Coal Combustion, Inc.

Blending coal on paper often looks like a way to offset poor quality aspects of one fuel with the better quality of another. This presentation will discuss what coal properties blend well, and which properties are more difficult to blend. Boiler combustion is generally set up for one type of coal. A total switch to another coal allows the operators and engineers to set the combustion process to that coal. Consistent blends can act like the blended analyses in total values like sulfur and CV, but some coal qualities like Hardgrove Grindability Index, (HGI), and slagging and fouling properties are harder to match plant performance with laboratory analyses. Rod will cover ideas in how to resolve some of these issues, and maximize fuel flexibility. Challenges with combustion, and slagging and ash deposits when blending sub-bituminous and bituminous coals will be addressed.

Economic Coal Selection System
Park Dong Woon, KOSEP

These days coal market is changing rapidly because of coal price rise & insufficient supply of high quality coal, so Electric power company use various kinds of coals for economical efficiency & reliable fuel supply. But as usage of sub-bitumous coal is increasing, environment of boiler combustion is worse than before. So it is very important that powerplant company develope the coal management program for operation & maintenance cost reduction & efficiency increasing. For the economic coal purchase, three cost factor should be considered. First is fuel cost, Second is operation cost for coal supply & flue gas draft system, And third is maintenance cost for facility malfunction & replacement. economical coal management means coal selection and mixing for satisfying these three factors.


Asian SBC Users' Group Meeting Day 2 - Coal Handling Break out will be comprised of presentations dealing with conveyors, stockpile management, CBM and much more.

Total Dust Management
Andy Hunter, Operations Manager, Benetech Inc.

This session will provide a comprehensive Total Dust Management approach to dealing with increased dust and hazards associated with sub-bituminous coal. Proven, industry leading technologies including dust collection, chemical dust suppression and containment will be covered. Discussions will present how these individual solutions provide optimum results when used together and in the right application. Current dust management strategies will be addressed with and eye to correctly implementing technologies that will reduce maintenance time requirements. Special focus will be given to benefits associated with the use of chemical dust suppression in an overall Clean Coal Material Handling Strategy. Improved employee safety and health, housekeeping labor reduction, and cost savings through improved efficiency in boiler heat rate over the common practice of heavy water sprays as a means for controlling dust are all benefits that will be presented.

Combustible Coal Dust: Has the Dust Settled?
Bob Taylor, Manager - ES&H, American Electric Power - AEP

Amongst the greatest risks to people, property and business interruption are those associated to dust. Whether it’s coal, ash, or even metal or wood shavings – you don’t want to learn about it after an explosion or fire… learn how to prevent an explosion or fire and how to develop and implement a combustible dust management system. Failure to realize its potential can have explosive results!

Conveyor Training, Inspections and Proven Products & Services to Improve Efficiency, Safety and Productivity for Coal-Fired Power Plant Conveying Systems
Aaron Gibbs, President, ASGCO "Complete Conveyor Solutions"

Asset optimization has never been more critical in the everyday things we do at home and at work. Conveyors are the lifeline to any coal-fired power plant’s productivity. No coal = No low cost affordable energy. Proper consistent training, periodic inspections of the conveying systems and reliable turn-key installation and on-going maintenance will ensure an incident and injury free workplace while maintaining a productive reliable workforce. All of which are essential to any material handling system and the employees who maintain and are responsible for them. This presentation will review ASGCO’s “Conveyor Training 101” program and the most common mistakes and problems that affect conveyor efficiency and how to identify and correct them to improve the productivity, safety and reliability of your conveyor systems. What safety guidelines should you be aware of when working on or around conveyors? What are the causes and more importantly the corrections of conveyor belt tracking? What are the reasons and corrections that you should know regarding belt cleaners and how they affect your conveyor performance? And finally, how do you implement a conveyor inspection and maintenance service program that works for your plant?

Stockpile Management and Spontaneous Combustion Handling of SBC in the Domes of Hsinta Thermal Power Plant
Tsai Yi-Shu, Manager of Fuel Section, HTPP, Taiwan Power Company

In order to reduce the scattering of coal dust, Hsinta Thermal Power Plant (HTPP) invested in building four (4) sets of domes each with the capacity of 170,000 MT, that were completed in December 2007. Such facilities have not only diminished 99.29% of the coal dust scattering, but also prevented the coal stockpile from rain, which would increase the moisture content of the coal, then affect the efficiency of electricity generation. It was also the vital factor that HTPP had the award of the best environmental friendly power plant from the Asian Electricity Magazine in 2008. In the early stage, HTPP had little knowledge about the coal storage in domes, and the severe spontaneous combustion of the coal piles took place therein. However, there was no effective solution for this issue from visiting the dome users around Taiwan, and HTPP had hardly extended the own researches since 1997 on the spontaneous combustion handling of sub-bituminous coal(SBC)owing to lack of experiences in the stockpile handing in domes. Referring to the related studies and getting through a series of experiments from February 2009, HTPP had been able to affirmatively handle the spontaneous combustion of the coal stockpiles in domes in August 2009 with the breakthrough to demonstrate that sub-bituminous coal was suitable to be stored in domes. For examples, SBC had ever been kept in domes for consecutive three (3) months without combustion, and bituminous coal piles safely lasted in the same circumstances for nine (9) months, that unexpectedly gained the additional storage efficiency of the domes.

CBM for Coal Handling Systems

Coal handling catastrophic equipment failures can result in fire, costly repairs, forced outages and injury to personnel. These events can damage the reputation of power providers whose primary objective is to deliver safe, high quality, reliable, and uninterrupted power at the lowest cost to consumers. Coal conveying equipment can be the most difficult to monitor due to guarding and other safety standards in place. Slow rotating equipment can also be challenging in the data gathering and analysis process. This presentation will describe how Westar Energy implemented a Condition Based Monitoring (CBM) program on coal handling equipment across its fleet of energy centers. The advantages and benefits of each technology will be discussed along with considerations one might contemplate if deploying a program at their site. Additionally, case histories from actual finds will also be covered in detail.

Operation and Maintenance of Pipe Conveyors in Lamma Power Station
Paul W.H. Man, Engineer (Material Handling), Hongkong Electric Company LTD,
K.W. Chan, Hongkong Electric Company LTD
Chun Hung Chow, Engineer I (MHD), Hongkong Electric Company LTD

Pipe conveyors have been retrofitted or newly installed in the coal handling system of Lamma Power Station since 1993. In terms of minimizing spillage and dust emission, pipe conveyors are more environmentally friendly than that of conventional conveyors.  With the ability to negotiate sharp turnings and steep angles of inclination, they significantly reduce the required number of transfer points hence overcome limitation due to space or presence of other buildings or structure. However, the maintenance of pipe conveyors is challenging due to their complexity and behavior under different loading conditions which may lead to “belt twisting”. Our experience in operation and maintenance of pipe conveyors are presented in this paper.

Just Stick It
Michael Greiner, President, Hazard Control Technologies, Inc.

This presentation is designed for both management and personnel handling sub-bituminous (Indonesian and Powder River Basin) coal who might be involved in identifying and/or mitigating hot spots or fires in bulk storage coal such as coal yards, coal domes or shed, bunkers/silos, barges, ships or rail cars. The presentation addresses the inherent hazards in handling sub-bituminous coal hot spots in bulk storage areas including understanding the physical characteristics and inherent dangers of working with sub-bituminous coal, recognizing the contributing factors and chemical reactions that lead to spontaneous combustion, explanation of common areas in bulk storage where hot spots occur, and why a proactive, disciplined and systematic approach is needed when dealing with sub-bituminous coal hot spots, fires, and dust is essential. Presentation addresses the critical systematic emergency response procedures outlined in the best practices of the Asian/PRB Sub Bituminous Coal Users Group including assessing course of action, what equipment is necessary for emergencies to accomplish wash down, thermal imagery mapping to locate hot spots, Piercing Rod operations, understanding Encapsulator Agents and why they are effective on sub-bituminous coal fires, safety guidelines and proper personal protective equipment. In addition the presenter covers the benefits or developing pre incident plans, why plant personnel should train repeatedly on emergency response operations, involving local emergency response personnel in training and developing SOG for bulk storage emergency response operations.

Coal Plant Facilities Improvement in Castle Peak Power Station
Ringo Chan
Dickson Chan




Asian SBC Users' Group Meeting Day 2 - Boiler and Combustion Break out will be comprised of presentations dealing with Blockage, performance, coal quality and effects on boilers, cost effective strategies and much more.

QPL Turbine Sectionalized Maintenance 
Ivan Chlapecek, Maintenance Superintendent of Pearl Energy Philippines Operating, Inc.,  Quezon Power Ltd

Learn from a recent overhaul completed by Quezon Power.  Maintenance Objectives were to perform turbine preventive maintenance and major overhaul while meeting business plan commitments, complying with insurance requirement and standards, meeting GE recommended inspection intervals and optimizing overhaul cost.


Benefits and Challenges of Burning 4000 CV Coal
Craig Vogel, Fuel & Combustion Consultant, PT Adaro Indonesia

The use of subbituminous coals has skyrocketed worldwide, from the Powder River Basin in the United States to Indonesian coals throughout Asia. In most cases, the benefits of lower sulfur, ash and NOx outweigh the issues with handling and lower calorific value (CV). As subbituminous coal consumption increases, lower CV reserves are being developed to meet the increased coal demand. CVs of 4000kcal/kg and possibly lower will become more common. While there is optimism for the success of coal upgrading, there are currently no technologies commercially available. This paper discusses the trend towards lower CV coals and the effects on users of subbituminous coal.

Optimizing Combustion While Firing Subbituminous Coals to Achieve the Best Possible Performance, Emissions and Unit Reliability
Richard Storm, President, Innovative Combustion Technologies, Inc. 

All coal fired power plants strive for “optimum” combustion. The importance of achieving optimum combustion is always misunderstood as well as how to achieve it. The overall process is simple, inject fuel and add air. Not understood is the fact that after fuel and air are added to the furnace the plant operator loses control of the fuel and air and must manage the consequences. Optimum combustion requires that all of the “inputs” be precisely controlled, metered and managed before fuel and air enter the furnace control of these inputs is lost. Boiler performance, combustion and unit reliability are all interrelated. Any moving part in the process from the pulverizer to stack will affect the “outputs” whether it be emissions, boiler efficiency, unit capacity (generation) and reliability. A holistic approach is always needed to address all the typical performance parameters influenced by combustion in the furnace. This presentation is geared towards providing an understanding of the interrelationships between all of the inputs and outputs into a large coal fired boiler.

Cost-Effective Combustion Modification Strategies for NOx Control in a Coal-fired Boiler
Hong-Shig Shim, Director, Reaction Engineering International
Marc Cremer, Vice President, Reaction Engineering International

The electric utility industry is facing aggressive mandatory limits on NOx emissions from coal fired furnaces. Proven NOx control technologies that provide a range of performance over a range of operating and capital costs are available. Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) has been proven to reliably achieve high NOx reduction; however, due to high capital and operating cost, utilities are interested in evaluation of other lower cost technologies. Sub-bituminous coal has advantage over higher rank coal due to its nitrogen release pattern that helps NOx control under combustion modification. However, highly non-linear characteristics of NOx formation and destruction need careful evaluation when a specific NOx control strategy is considered for a given fuel set including sub-bituminous coal. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modeling has found increasing use among combustion engineers in the design and evaluation of utility boiler retrofits, combustion optimization, and NOx reduction technologies. This paper reviews recent examples of cost-effective combustion modification technologies for NOx reduction including air staging, selected non-catalytic reagent injection, rich reagent injection, and advanced layered technology approach (ALTA). In the hands of experienced combustion and CFD engineers, CFD modeling can provide a valuable tool to cost-effectively evaluate impacts of potential furnace alterations on NOx emissions, carbon in fly ash, CO emission, and other important balance of plant features, such as fire-side corrosion.

Coal Quality and its Effect on Boiler Combustion
Rod Hatt, Chief Technical Officer, Coal Combustion, Inc.

This presentation will cover coal quality impacts on the boiler combustion process. The impact of coal rank on the milling and combustion process will be discussed. How the combustion process and coal ash and mineral types influence slag and fouling deposits is the main topic. Rod will cover how low NOx firing and the use of sub-bituminous verses bituminous coals also impact combustion and ash deposit formation. How ash, sulfur, CV, ash constituents such as iron, calcium, and sodium impact ash deposits will be included. How tuning the combustion process improves these issues will also be discussed.

Boiler Cleaning Solutions and Results for Sub-Bituminous Coals

Peter Dougherty, Sales and Technical Coordination – Manager – Asian, Diamond Power Specialty Limited, Korea

In recent years there has been a significant growth in the number of coal fired power plants constructed in Asia. The prevailing conditions of the global coal market now demands that many plants employ coal switching or blending techniques. This requires modern boiler cleaning systems to deliver effective and consistent performance for plants operating with a wide range of coals that differ significantly from the original design fuel. In many cases burning a lower ranked coal will result in a significantly different slagging pattern producing highly adhesive ash deposits. These are difficult to remove effectively with traditional steam sootblower cleaning equipment leading to a reduction in boiler performance. Similar issues were previously experienced in the USA after a large number of plants switched to Powder River Basin coal following the introduction of stringent environmental legislation in the 1990’s. Many of the lower ranked sub-bituminous coals being used in Asia today have similar problems associated with ineffective online cleaning. This paper reviews the history of using furnace water cleaning as an alternative furnace cleaning method when burning difficult coals. The effectiveness of using water cleaning and the hazards associated with damage from thermal impact are explored. The paper will demonstrate methods of controlling these hazards using state of art sensing technology coupled with modern computer processing power. The paper will demonstrate the development of reliable and safe cleaning methods that ensures plant efficiency can be maintained despite the increasing variability of coals being used. Three specific cases are discussed in the paper. These examples demonstrate the improvements in operation and efficiency realized from the application of an online water cleaning system. Actual plant data and analysis are presented to illustrate a practical solution for plant operators that are faced with operational efficiency challenges resulting from today’s flexible coal sourcing policies.




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