Heat generation company Steam Gener- ation Africa will soon be deliver- ing two containerised mobile steam plants to mining projects in North and Central Africa.
“There is an increasing demand for saving space and ensuring the mobility of boiler plants in Africa. We are seeing this trend more and more and have been involved in supplying boiler plants in containers throughout Africa,” says MD John Rundle.
The company is also currently refurbishing several containerised mobile steam plants, that have returned from mines in Africa, and which, on completion, will be returned to site.
“The mobile boiler plants are mostly used for steam and occasionally for hot water generation mainly on mining sites,” Rundle explains.
He tells Engineering News that this is in line with growing demand to transport boiler plants in containers across the challenging terrains of Africa, particularly to remotely located mining and industrial engineering projects.
“There are a number of projects where clients only require steam for a plant start-up process, which is an ideal application for our mobile steam plants as they can be moved easily between new sites,” highlights Rundle.
He believes that this trend of companies requiring containerised boiler plants is likely to grow, as projects are developed in more remote locations in Africa.
Steam Generation Africa predominantly supplies a South African explosives manufac-turer with the containerised mobile steam plants.
Rundle says two transport methods are used.
“One is to transport the components indivi-dually and assemble the boiler and boiler house items on site, while the other is to fully assemble the units at the factory and transport the assembled units. “The second method ensures that, once the boiler unit arrives on site, it is ready to be operated, as no additional assembly and commissioning are required.”
The company produces the containerised mobile steam and/or hot water plants in accord- ance with customer specifications and require-ments.
The basic boiler plant items include a feed-water heater, or fuel tank, internal electrical wiring, pumps and a water softener plant.
“In some cases, when there is space, we also include a workshop area,” adds Rundle.
However, he says that the limited size of the standard shipping containers does limit the size of the boiler one can fit into it.
Nonetheless, he points out that Steam Generation Africa can supply containerised boilers with a maximum output of 3 000 kg/h.
“These sizes enable operators to freely walk around the unit and have easy access to the boiler equipment.”
Rundle explains that containers can be exten-sively modified, such as by having lift-up side panels, or double doors to allow for multiple entry and exit points for the boiler operating crews.
Local supplier and modification specialist A&A Containers undertakes the container modifications for Steam Generation Africa.
Rundle says Steam Generation Africa sells about four new containerised mobile steam plants a year and the company also undertakes repair work, as well as ad hoc on-site repairs, on containerised boilers.
“We also provide training for clients at our facility in Midrand. The training encompasses the operation and maintenance of boiler equipment, as well as the maintenance of the container units.”
Rundle says clients bring their boiler operating personnel to the company’s Midrand premises to receive training.
“This ensures the boiler operators learn how to operate and maintain their mobile steam plants on site and it assists them in familiarising themselves with the units which they will oper-ate,” he points out, adding that the company also supplies spare parts for the steam plants.
Moreover, Rundle highlights that there is an increasing trend, particularly as a result of the challenging economic climate, for refurbished ‘first tripper’ containers.