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  • The facts on the stacks!

    30 Aug 2012

    If you live local to our Port Talbot site you might be Wondering just what on earth those two new chimney stacks are for...well wonder no more as electrical engineer David Warner and Project Engineer, Dean Cockings shed some light on the work taking place. And it’s all about upgrading for a more efficient plant.

    If you live local to our Port Talbot site you might be wondering just what on earth those two new chimney stacks are for...well wonder no more as electrical engineer David Warner and Project Engineer, Dean Cockings shed some light on the work taking place.  And it’s all about upgrading for a more efficient plant.

    The furnace stack ensures that the waste gas used in the combustion process to heat up the slabs in the furnace, is safely removed from the furnaces and the construction work you now see is the result of three years of design and preparation, with the civil work being carried out last year.  

    “The concrete furnace stack has been in place since the building of the original hot mill furnaces in 1985.  Despite two furnace upgrades, the 25 year old stack has never been changed and is now starting to show its age.” he explained “Over the last ten years, the repair bill has increased dramatically and has become ever more time consuming.  It was clear something needed to be done.” said David.

    The foundations were constructed with 100 pre-cast concrete piles, each reaching depths of up to 16m and 1000 cubic metres of concrete.

    Manufactured in sections before installation, the new layout provides two steel chimneys, one placed on either side of the existing concrete chimney.  The new chimneys benefit from an additional 10m of height, now both measuring 120m, which will also mean there will be an increase of draft to exhaust the waste gases from the reheat furnaces. The new chimneys will also be maintenance free for a minimum of 10 years, as a result of using optimum materials and coatings.

    The ‘break-in’ to tie the new chimneys into the existing duct system will be carried out during the next available hot mill reheat furnace outage.

    As with most of the site at the moment, the project also requires a pretty big crane.  And at 1000t capacity and 135m boom length, this one takes two days to assemble on the floor and is capable of lifting 50 tonnes at 120m in height. There are no current plans for the removal of the old stack.

    Stack of facts!

    • The existing stack is 110 metres in height, has a concrete outer shell or windshield.
    • Inside this there are two inner brick chimney barrels, each made up of 9 brick built segments. One for A furnace, One for B Furnace.
    • The new chimney foundations were constructed using 100 precast reinforced concrete piles each driven up to 16 m into the ground.
    • There was a total of 1000 cubic metres or approx. 2400 tonnes of concrete used for both foundations.
    • The new chimneys are approx. 255 tonnes in weight
    • The new chimneys benefit from an additional 10m height at 120m.
    • The new stack will be maintenance free for a minimum of 10 years