Alice in wonderland after scooping prestigious engineering gong

An electrical engineer from energy firm E.ON has scooped the top accolade at the prestigious Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) Young Woman Engineer of the Year Awards.

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Alice Delahunty, 26, of Sneinton in Nottinghamshire, UK, beat hundreds of other candidates to take the award and à‚£1000 ($1936) prize money.

Alice said: “I was so surprised and happy to have won! It’s a great opportunity to challenge people’s preconceptions about what an engineer is and to hopefully encourage other young people to become enthusiastic about a career in engineering.”

“Right now there are big changes taking place in the energy industry and there’s a huge shortage of young people in technology jobs. There’s lots of exciting and interesting jobs available but I don’t think people realise this.”

Alice is the 30th female engineer to be awarded the accolade by the UK’s largest engineering society. The award seeks to reward the very best female engineers the UK has to offer, highlighting the achievements of women in engineering and encouraging others to enter the profession.

Alice has worked as an Electrical Engineer for E.ON for the past three years, and spearheads the development of innovative solutions within the power industry.

Her role involves providing operational support to E.ON UK’s power stations, which includes giving advice on how to continue to generate power in the most efficient, cost effective and environmentally sound manner.

One of her most recent ventures involved suggesting and setting up a sustainable design project for students at Loughborough University to design a radical street lighting system.

Alice is now acting as a technical consultant to the students, who are working to progress their designs to prototype stage.

Crimp and save for connector module safety

The Han Q 12/0 from Harting is an industrial connector module incorporating 12 crimp contacts, allowing power and signal connections to be combined in a single compact unit.

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The new module can be used for applications, which require power transmission at up to 400 V and 10 A, alongside the interfacing of control and diagnosis signals.

The Han Q 12/0 features a compact design which, when combined with a high contact density and Harting’s innovative Han-Quick Lock termination technique, offers the benefits of space saving along with ease of installation.

The connector module can be equipped with all the available Han D crimp contacts, an important prerequisite for an efficient termination process. It is also compatible with all housings in the standard Harting Han 3 A range. The module includes two extra coding devices to offer the safety of fault-free mating assignment of multiple plug connectors without the loss of a contact position.

Boil in the USA

Metso Power, part of the Metso Paper business area, will expand its boiler service capacity in the USA with a €10m ($15m) investment. The investment is a part of Metso’s profitable growth strategy. It supports the service business growth and will enhance its portfolio of service offerings to the North American pulp and paper, and power generation market.

Metso Power will establish a new boiler service center and expand an existing one to better serve its customers in North America. The new boiler service center will be located in Lancaster, South Carolina. It is close to the Charlotte, North Carolina area, central to a high concentration of Metso Power boiler installations, as well as Metso Power’s North American office. The existing boiler service center in Fairmont, West Virginia will be expanded. In total, the two centers employ about 100 people.

The investments will be completed during the second quarter of 2008.

Process engineers won’t get a rough time from rugged multi point flow meter

Process engineers looking for a rugged instrument to measure complex stack gas flows precisely in accordance with clean air regulatory requirements will find the intelligent MT91 multi-point mass flow meter from Fluid Components International is available with a tough chromium-carbide coating that protects it from dirty, abrasive and hot particulates for trouble-free, cost-effective operation over a long service life.

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In coal-fired electric power generation, refining, petrochemical refining, steel manufacturing and many other industrial processes, hot waste gas flows must be continuously monitored, treated and reported to meet government clean air requirements and to ensure process efficiency.

Flow meters are placed directly in the stack where dirty, abrasive particulates may cause wear to the flow sensor element assembly, which over time can degrade measurement accuracy or excessive repairs.

FCI’s MT91 multi-point mass flow meter is designed specifically for rugged CEMS pollution control and oil refining applications. The combination of FCI’s no-moving parts thermal mass sensor technology and its chromium carbide coated sensor assembly delivers high flow measurement reliability with virtually no maintenance over years of service for an exceptionally low life-cycle cost.

Hurricane has spin-off benefit for steam turbine specialists

Headquartered in Stromness in the Orkney Islands, Combustion, Energy and Steam Specialists Limited. (CESS) have recently been instrumental in the sale of a 2.4 MW Peter Brotherhood steam turbine from Grand Cayman Island to Geodynamics Limited in Australia.

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The turbine had been subjected to flooding and severe saltwater spray in November 2004 when Hurricane Ivan swept through the Cayman Islands.

Subsequent electrical tests revealed that the alternator was not too badly damaged and the owner Caribbean Utilities Corporation also had a spare rotor for the steam turbine in storage.

This project completion ties in with CESS’s recent announcement of having completed over 30 000 MW of valuation experience in the past 12 years.

CESS has to date been instrumental in the sale of 58 gas turbines (totaling over 2064 MW), 30 steam turbines (646 MW), 90 diesel/gas engines (207 MW), and 45 transformers (total 616 MW) and since established in January 1995 the company has contributed over à‚£4.7 million ($9 million) to the local economy in the Orkney Islands. Earlier this year they concluded the sale of a 30 MW steam turbine from Poland to the Tata Group in India.

Layher scaffolding: a stairway to heavenly maintenance

Deborah Services Limited has completed a major installation of a Layher scaffolding system to meet specific challenges presented by one of the UK’s major power station facilities.

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The project at Drax coal fired power station in Selby à‚— the largest unit of its type in Western Europe à‚— has played a key role in the regular ‘outage work scope’ that is undertaken at the site. Deborah Services’ decision to work with Layher to identify the optimum access solution has paid significant dividends, particularly in terms of speed of erection and clear, unhindered access.

The six boiler units at Drax undergo an ongoing programme of inspection and maintenance over a six-year period that includes pressure part inspection and renewal. This requires scaffold access to be installed throughout the throat, main chamber and upper pendant areas to enable the work, which includes NDT and blasting of the side walls, to be carried out. Because it is important that each boiler unit is offline for the minimum amount of time, it is vital that the access system contributes as effectively as possible to minimizing the outage period.

“Importantly, we were able to complete the full installation of the Layher scaffold within approximately six days where conventionally tube and fitting has taken almost twice this time,” comments Chris Foulkes, senior operations manager at Deborah Services. “The design incorporated a crash deck built from a scaffold on the boiler floor, ten independent lifts up to a height of 22 m, a further crash deck and an additional ten lifts to the full height of the chamber. Each lift was fully fitted with steel decking with Layher staircases used throughout to provide safe multi-personnel access,” he continues. “We believe this is the first time the stair systems have been specified in the UK for this type of application.

“Because the Layher design does not need cross bracing, clear access is provided throughout each walkway which has been a major advantage during the removals of tube panels, which can measure up to 15 m in length. With the added safety benefit arising from the absence of loose components and its inherent heavy duty strength, the Layher system has proven to be the optimum system for the installation, making a major contribution to the overall efficiency of the maintenance work,” concludes Foulkes.

It is a testimony that has been echoed by Steve Worrell, operations manager at Doosan Babcock Energy who undertake the inspection and repair service and were responsible for appointing Deborah Services for the work. “Both Doosan Babcock and Drax power station believe this has reset the benchmark for furnace scaffolds within the UK,” he comments.

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