Solar and Renewables

At the forefront of CSP since

Concentrated Solar Power (CSP), is the field where all CADE capacities are clearly materialized since the sector start-up, as a strong and reliable partner along all project or asset life cycle, covering from Technology R&D to Operational Plants consultancy and engineering.

Nowadays, 18 Operating CSP plants over the world counts on CADE on a regular basis to evaluate,optimize and improve main plant systems and equipment. 

CADE, jointly with main world EPC contractors develops new technology concepts around efficiency and availability upgrade as well as new plant technology concepts aimed to reach the CSP grid parity.

Andasol 1 & 2 CSP plant (Spain)

Executed Projects

  • Mechanical analysis of static equipment and heat exchangers
  • Failure analysis of molten salt tank (bottom)
  • Analysis and evaluation of failure in  ball joint assembly system (parabolic trough)
  • Feasibility study of flexible hoses as substitutive of ball joints
  • Evaluation of cracks in 30” HTF collector piping
  • Feasibility study of  line-stop installation
  • Evaluation of cracks in molten tanks nozzles
  • Evaluation of vibration phenomena in pumps of molten salt tanks
  • Evaluation of cracks in molten salt piping in creep range operation
  • Failure root cause analysis (RCA) in heat exchangers (SG, MS)
  • Drainage piping system of HTF Main and freeze protection systems to reduce equipment shut down time and improving of safety requirements
  • Design of drainage system of molten salts and HTF-Molten Salts separation system (heat exchangers failure)
  • Solar field by-pass. Solar field/power block independization
  • By-pass SGT: Availability upgrade
  • By-pass Molten Salts – HTF Heat exchangers: Availability upgrade
  • By-pass BP Preheaters: Maintenance upgrade
  • Definition of control valves for HTF boilers (surface temperature control in boiler tubes).
  • Optimization of the HTF level in expansion system to avoid nitrogen trapping.
  • Plant suitability for regulatory tests (steam side and HTF side).
  • Design of HTF / N2 condensing and cooling system in PSV shots: Quench tank design.

Static equipment: SG Train, preheaters, storage tanks, Molten Salt Train: 

  • Evaluation of nominal and partial real loads vs, proyect
  • Analysis of termal shocks
  •  Fatigue Evaluation
  • Vibration analysis. 

Dynamic equipment: Main Pumps, BFW pumps, Molten Salts Pumps

  • Analysis of operational points vs pump curve (Q min, Q max, BEP)
  • Vibration analysis
  • Analysis of O&M vs operation
  • Installation inspection and loads on nozzles

Results obtained:

  • Evaluation of operational accumulated damage and remaining life assessment.
  • Identification of operational limits (termal shocks, ramps, flows)
  • Evaluation of operational, maintenance and mechanical upgrades,
  • Optimization of pumping comsumption.
  • Thermal and hydraulic simulation of SGTrain:
    • Heat Exchanger simulation according to supplier’s drawings.
    • Analysis of DCS operation data

Results obtained:

  • Actual response of HEXs vs. project Performance analysis and heat losses
  • Identification of accerated fouling: low performance, DeltaP increase
  • Identification of mechanical failures: by passes, pores Identification of steaming and vaporization (in PH): fouling, erosion.
  • Identification of mechanical risk due to vibrations.
  • Proposal for operational improvement measures
  • Proposals for NDTs if required: boroscopy, thickness measurement, analysis of remains (during operation, during shut down)

Thermal and hydraulic simulation of molten salt /HTF Heat Exchangers:

  • Heat Exchanger simulation according to supplier’s drawings
  • Analysis of DCS operation data

Results obtained:

  • Power output opitmization and charge/discharge time: curves of exchanged power as a function of operating flows.
  • Influence Identification of ratio Q HTF / Q Molten Salts on tubes temperature: Integration of safeties in DCS in order not to reach limits defined by supplier
  • Operational limits due to vibrations

Simulations of failure event: operation with the rest of available heat exchangers

Results obtained:

  • Power curve as a function of number of available heat exchangers
  • Design of by-pass system in order to operate during failure event. Basic and detailed engineering
  • Analysis of performance of rest of available equipment as a function of equipment failure hypothesis.
  • Analysis of potential flow increase in available equipment to compensate power output reduction.
  • Design of by-pass systems (basic and detail engineering).
  • Analysis of boroscopic tests
  • Analysis of thickness measurements
  • Analysis of samples (analysis of elements, analysis of compounds

Results obtained:

  • Analysis of causative mechanisms: steaming, vaporization, corrosion mechanisms, etc.
  • Influence over thermal performance
  • Influence over remaining life expectance
  • Proposal of monitoring and improvement measures
  • Water quality: revision of operation conditions (DCS and plant’s analytics) Vs recommendable values.
  • Effect/impact of water quality over main equipment.
    • Heat exchangers: corrosion, depositions, performance loss
    • Steam turbine: fouling (Na, Si, metallic oxides) and performance loss
  • Mechanical carryover analysis in Steam Generator (fouling of SH and steam turbine).
  • Revision of sampling procedure along continuous operation.
  • Definition of monitoring procedures.
  • Engineering tool to fouling monitoring of steam turbine.
    • Calculation of fouling rate
    • Time estimation until next shut-down for cleaning maintenance
  • Identification of susceptible points to present N2 accumulation and calculation of accumulated N2
  • Evaluation of N2 carryover velocity in each point
  • Evaluation of venting requirement as a function of its influence on downstream equipment
  • Venting system design and enginnering