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Large Scale Fan Test Facility

As part of the MinwaterCSP H2020 project, the European Union allocated funding for the construction of a 24 foot diameter fan and cooling system test facility on the premises of Stellenbosch University. The MinwaterCSP project aims to reduce the water consumption of concentrated power plants by implementing high efficiency cooling processes and novel mirror cleaning techniques in these plants. The project team consists of 13 partner entities, including Stellenbosch University (https://www.minwatercsp.eu). The test facility was designed by Enexio Germany and manufactured by Kelvion Thermal Solutions at their workshops in Germiston, Johannesburg. Construction of the facility is being managed by Kelvion and got off to a start on Monday, 19 March 2018.  Commissioning of the test facility will be finalized in June 2018.

The facility opens up new horizons for testing, verifying and demonstrating cooling system axial flow fans and a novel delugeable dry-cooled heat exchanger in full-scale. The systems being tested on the facility are typically found in direct dry-cooled condensers, such as those used in the new Medupi and Kusile coal fired power stations in South Africa, and the NOOR II and III concentrated solar power stations in Morocco.  The test facility is the only one of its kind in the world and could contribute to technologies that would significantly decrease water and energy consumption in power plants, while maintaining or possibly even improving net-power output to the client, especially in drought-stricken regions where CSP plants are customary.  With the hot climate prevailing, this is cool business indeed…

Photo:  Dr Fancois Louw (Kelvion) and Prof Johan van der Spuy (Stellenbosch University) in front of the nearly-completed test facility.