Reverse Osmosis Improves Boiler Efficiency
By William F. Harfst
The United States is home to 163,000 industrial and commercial boilers. Of these, 43,000 industrial boilers, having a combined output capacity of 1.6 trillion British thermal units per hour (MTBtu/hr), provide process steam to primary industries such as food, paper, chemicals, refining, and primary metals. An average industrial boiler is rated at 36 million Btu/hr (37,000 pounds of steam per hour). Commercial boilers account for 120,000 units that provide heat and hot water for office buildings, hospitals, and universities. The average commercial boiler is smaller in size than the typical industrial boiler at 9.6 million Btu/hr (10,000 pounds of steam per hour), but because of the far greater number of units in service, commercial boilers have a total output capacity of 1.1 million MTBtu/hr; which is 68% of the industrial output.
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