Header Replacement Complete at Fort Martin
October 13, 2017 -- A major project milestone of the Fort Martin Unit 1 outage was completed successfully with the installation of a new final reheat inlet header last Friday.
The headers provide an integral path for steam flow from the boiler through the turbine, and were original equipment at the plant, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.
"This was a big project, and it's not something you see very often,” said Dave Piktel, supervisor, Technical Services. “It involved removing the side of the boiler and the old header, and lifting the new unit into place."
It also meant removing the inlet header. Because both elements are located atop the boiler, the heavy components had to be lifted more than 10 stories.
"There's some significant rigging involved, and tight clearances," said Russ Purdum, outage superintendent. “Fort Martin is in a tight valley, and we’re not blessed with an overabundance of space.”
The outlet header elements weigh 11 tons; the inlet, more than 5 tons. The circumference of the lift included portions of the plant’s administration building, which were evacuated during lifts as a safety precaution. During the planning process, safety planning was at the forefront of all discussions, minimizing impacts to other work in the area.
In addition to the installation of the new outlet header, the inlet was inspected while at ground level and any indications that were found were repaired.
“Those repairs went well,” said Russ. “Every weld passed its first inspection.”
“We have a lot of outage work to go,” said Dave, “but it’s nice to have this successfully behind us. There was a great deal of planning and preparation by a lot of people that went into this task.”
This article was written for a FirstEnergy employee publication
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