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Applications of Boilers

5/31/2012 7:36:17 AM | by Anonymous


Have you ever wondered why locomotives release steam? It is actually produced by the boiler which is responsible for the train to run. Boilers work by burning fuels such as oil, wood, coal or natural gas and the generated fire will heat up the water. Apart from fuel, nuclear reactor can also supply the heat. The water will turn into steam which pressure drives the engine. During the early times, locomotive’s engine was referred to as boilers way before the term steam generators was coined. Today, boilers are only considered as part of a bigger engine called steam generators. The difference can be the amount of pressures a machine generates. It is said that steam generators produce higher pressure compared to boilers.


Boilers can be found manufacturing industries and Marine. They are applied where steam, hot water and superheated water production is needed. Conventional steam boiler has two types: fire-tube boiler and water-tube boiler. Fire-tube boiler is easy to install and operate. It is the type that is used on steam locomotives. Its other applications are for heating buildings and providing power for factory processes. Water-tube boiler is usually applied in ships and factories. Ships utilize the steam produced for various processes such as cleaning, heating, sanitation, etc. The industries that require large type of water-tube boilers are oil refineries, steel mills, chemical plants and paper mills.


The material preferred for the construction of pressure vessel found in boilers used to be copper. It was highly favored because of its great thermal conductivity and better formability. However, its high price paved the way for people to look for a cheaper substitute such as steel or wrought iron. Today, most of the designs in producing boilers are made of steel. It has been the material of choice because it is cheap, durable and can be welded which results to quicker production and less labour.

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