JEC is the largest coal-fired power plant in the state, with three generating units producing 1,857 MW. All three burn low-sulfur coal (as much as 33,000 tons per day between them) and take advantage of some of the most advanced emission control technologies available. Over time, operators began to notice increased dust and spillage around transfer points on four of its 42-inch conveyors. The problem was traced to worn chutes and skirtboard liners. A worn-out skirtboard liner plate was found to be exacerbating the problem. Rather than patching the existing chutes and liners, JEC want to see if they could find a better design solution.
Westar contacted Martin Engineering to investigate its options, and technicians came out to access the situation. Today's chutes capture and concentrate the material stream as it travels through the chute. Each one is designed to suit the specific material characteristics and conveyor systems of the individual customer. Transfer chutes from Martin Engineering provide the dual benefits of minimizing aeration and preventing buildup within the chute, particularly important when dealing with combustible materials. Martin also installed ApronSeal™ Skirting, which incorporates a primary seal clamped to the steel skirtboard to keep lumps on the belt and a secondary or "outrigger" strip to capture any fines or dust particles that pass beneath the primary seal. All four transfer points also received Martin Engineering belt cleaners to minimize carryback.
Worn chutes and skirtboards at Westar Energy's Jeffrey Energy Center (JEC) were replaced with custom-designed components from Martin Engineering, employing special geometries that capture and concentrate the material stream as it travels. The result is a cleaner working environment, less maintenance and reduced waste, as material is better contained. Coal Handling Engineer Josh Olson stated, "The Martin Engineering guys are extremely knowledgeable, and they've been out several times to make sure everything is running at its optimum level."
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