Actuation upgrade improves power station

Rotork electric modulating actuators have been installed in an upgrade at the RWE npower Fawley Power Station in southern England. Built in the late 1960s, the oil-fired station is capable of supplying the National Grid with 1000MW of power to balance supply and demand at times of peak usage.
It is therefore essential that the station can respond to the National Grid demands with speed and flexibility. The Rotork actuators have replaced obsolete hydraulic actuators and power packs that were requiring increased levels of costly and time consuming maintenance and presenting ongoing issues involving the use of hydraulic oils. These included high operating pressures and the potential for safety and environmental issues associated with leaks.
The power packs also required continuous electrical power to maintain hydraulic pressure. By comparison, the Rotork actuators only use electricity when they are operating and do not require routine maintenance. The retrofitting began on the station’s Unit 1 during the 2009 outage period with the installation of Rotork Type LA linear stroke actuators on reheat and super heater dampers and electric feed pump speed regulators.
This was followed by the installation of Rotork Type SM6000 lever arm actuators on ID (induced draft) and FD (forced draft) fan discharge dampers. Upon completion of the project, a total of sixteen Type LA and four Type SM6000 actuators have now been installed on Units 1 and 3.
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