Hydrodynamic cleaning of rotary air heaters and fume coolers in utility boilers

Regenerative rotary air heaters (ROPP-LUVO) and fume coolers (ROSS-GAVO) are devices exposed to operation in specifically unfavourable conditions. The high temperature exhaust gas, mechanical impurities, i.e. ash and other substances, and constant exposure to cool air favour the contamination of the surface of heat exchange resulting in the increased resistance to air flow, lowering the heat exchange ratio, and consequently, increase of the efficiency of the device and the boiler, which finally causes unnecessary increase of the cost of operation of utility unit.

The solution of the problems with contamination of the baskets of rotary heat exchangers is water cleaning of ROPP/ROSS fillings offered by Ecol.

Hydrodynamic cleaning in Ecol technology is based on remote high-pressure water jet spraying of the spaces between the spaces of the “baskets” of the exchanger. High-kinetic-energy water jets (exhaust pressure: 35MPa) with 500 l/min flow rate leaving 16 nozzles causes the deposits to tear off, crush, and rinse out from the “baskets” without breaking delicate profiled sheets filling the exchanger. Water used as a cleaning agent penetrates and cleans of all types of ROPP (ROSS), including 319 slantwise filling.

Water poses no threat for ceramic fillings and can be successively used to clean heat exchangers with such filling, eliminating thus additional problem of removing heavy and delicate inserts (avoiding crumbling out and chipping).

Remote cleaning of rotary heat exchangers is performed with a mobile hydraulic power unit with combustion engine and specialist equipment installed inside the exchanger. The bearing beams are mounted radially on both sides of the rotor, from above and below, with nozzle units on bogies.

During cleaning, the drive of the exchanger is controlled with an inverter designed to adjust the rotation speed of the rotor to the travel speed and the efficiency of the nozzle units powered with water from a high-pressure hydraulic power unit.

Advantages of hydrodynamic cleaning of rotary heaters:

highest ratio of surface cleaning compared to other cleaning methods;

no need of toilsome disassembly and assembly of heating baskets;

no negative influence on natural environment through elimination of moisture (corrosion), secondary contamination of building and boiler room equipment (slugging) as in the case of cleaning baskets after removal;

short time of fulfilment (ROPP—LUVO up to 24 h; ROSS—REGAVO 48 to 56 h);

very short reimbursement time;

Hydrodynamic cleaning service performed by Ecol is at the moment the most efficient, safest, fastest, and the least expensive method of contamination removal from the rotary heat exchangers, characterised with very short time of reimbursement of expenditures on the operation.


Since 2001, Ecol Sp. z o.o. has been successively performing services of hydrodynamic cleaning of rotary baskets in heat and fume exchangers, showing its high effectiveness and usefulness in the power industry.

Until now, we have cleaned hundreds of rotary exchangers in numerous power plants, and combined heat and power plants.

See also: Hydrodynamic cleaning—hydroblasting