Science and Technology

Big boiler tech

| Updated on January 31, 2021

Advanced ultra-super critical (AUSC) boilers are the holy grail of coal-fired power research, which seeks to enhance efficiency of energy generation by producing steam at extremely high temperatures and pressure — such as 700 degrees C and 300 bars.

The critical issue is developing steel that will not crack under such harsh conditions. In India, public sector power companies have for long been working on AUSC boilers; the International Advanced Research Centre for Powder Metallurgy and New Materials (ARCI), a Hyderabad-based government-owned research body, is developing this kind of steel, using a manufacturing technique called oxide dispersion strengthened (ODS) iron aluminides.

This steel can replace the nickel-based super alloys that have been thought to be most suited for AUSC. The research is at the ‘proof-of-concept’ stage.

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Published on January 31, 2021
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