Improving Performance and Flexibility of Thermal Power Plants

The large output from non-dispatchable wind and solar sources means that coal power and other generators need to cycle deeper and more frequently to support grid stability. Cycling includes shutting down and starting up, load ramping, and operating at a low load. On the other hand, most of the old coal-fired power plants in the U.S. and Europe were designed for base load service with limited range and rate for load changes. These plants need to improve their cycling capabilities to compete in the market and attain reasonable operating time and revenue.

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