Essential Requirements That Fuel Should Posses

In this article, I will share some of the very important requirements that any fuel that is selected to be used in a power plant should possess.


These are the requirements that will contribute to the effective use of the fuel in the power plants.


They should be observed before fuel is chosen to be used in the power plant.


Without wasting time, let me share the requirements that fuel should possess to be used in any power plant.


A fuel should possess the following requirements;

1. A fuel should have a high calorific value.

This is the first important requirement of any fuel that is selected to be used in a power plant.


A high energy value, also known as a high calorific value, is essential since it covers the total energy that fuel can deliver when in use.


Any fuel chosen to be used should have a high calorific value to increase the efficiency of the process, which depends on the heat energy in the power plant.


With a high calorific value fuel, the steam generation in a steam power plant is going to be smooth.


When it comes to boilers, the steam will be of the required quality and quantity, thus giving an excellent performance.


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A fuel with a lower calorific value is going to drag the processes in any power plant, the amount of fuel that will be needed will be more, and this will end up increasing the operating cost of the power plant.


Since fuels with a low calorific value will produce a high amount of ash content, this will lead to other issues of disposal that will require an additional budget.


So, you should choose a fuel that will cost you a little bit but it has the high energy value.


Talking about fuel prices, that brings me to the next point.


2. Its price should be cheap.

This is another essential requirement of the fuel selected to be used in any power plant.


The price of the fuel should not be too expensive to break the bank accounts of the company.


You have to remember that the operations in the power plant are supposed to be going on the budget laid out.


No matter the kind of fuel chosen to be used in the power plant, it should be affordable and of the required quality and quantity.


These are the two things that should be kept in check. It won’t be appropriate if you select the cheapest fuel, yet it’s not of the required quality.


Don’t just choose cheap fuel without checking the quality of the fuel.


Doing so will only put the power plant in more issues; choosing the wrong fuel will decrease the output of the power plant, and this will result in losses.


The fuel chosen should be affordable; too expensive fuel is going to increase the operation cost of the power plant, which won’t be economical.


3. It should have a high operating efficiency.

The fuel should have a high operating efficiency to produce the energy required in the power plant.


It should burn effectively, producing a higher amount of energy, and it should produce a small amount of ash.


The fuel should produce a minimum amount of smoke, dust, slag and clinkering in the furnace.


If the fuel chosen is coal, it should be studied carefully on the amount of Sulphur it contains, volatile matter, moisture content, ash fusion temperature, ash analysis, and grinding and coking characteristics of the coal.


All these studies will ensure that the fuel will be put to use in situations that will lead to higher operating efficiency.


The operating efficiency of the fuel will happen when the fuel is corrected and analyzed to determine in which conditions it is going to produce the required energy.


The analysis of the fuel, before it is put into use, will help the plant operator figure out ways to prepare the fuel for use, the kind of firing system that the fuel will need, and so much more.


These are all important factors to ensure that the fuel operates with high efficiency.


4. It should produce low content of ash.

This is another important requirement of the fuel selected to be used in a power plant.


The fuel chosen to be used in energy production should produce low content of ash when burning.


This will save the power plant from the ash disposal problem.


With the ash disposal issues comes another operating cost which will add to the main operating cost.


The ash will need a space to be collected; after that, it will need to be disposed of, and someone will be needed to do all these things, thus increasing cost.


When you use oil and gas as your primary sources of fuel, you are going to be much lucky since they produce a very small amount of ash.


Whereas if you choose to use coal as your primary source of fuel, you should expect a sufficient amount of ash content; you will have no choice but to handle the ash produced.


To be on the safe side, you should choose coal that produces a lower amount of ash when it burns.


Coal with a higher calorific value will produce a low amount of ash content compared to coal with a low calorific value. This is something you should keep in mind.


5. It should have a lower cost of handling.

The fuel selected should require a minimum cost when it comes to handling.


What you need to know is that the handling cost of the fuels is going to differ depending on the type of fuel selected.


The handling cost of the fuel involves the movement of the fuel from one point to another.


This can start from where the fuel is produced to the power plant; when it’s in the power plant, it will need to be stored. After that, it will have to be taken to the point of application.


All these movements won’t be possible without spending money.


Coal has the maximum cost when it comes to handling; gas has the least cost of handling, and oil is intermediate.


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6. It should have a lower labour operating cost.

The fuel selected should offer a low labour operating cost.


When coal is selected as the primary source of fuel, the labour operating costs are going to be higher.


The power plants that use coal will have no choice but to budget more on the labour side of handling the coal.


Lucky are the power plants that use oil or gas as their primary sources of fuel; these have lower labour operating costs.



These requirements of the fuel are essential, and they have to be observed to reduce the operating cost of the power plants.


But there are some requirements that some of the power plants won’t be able to fulfil due to the nature of the processes and the equipment used.


The best thing to be done is to ensure that there is a balance on every side to ensure the cost of operation is reduced no matter the kind of fuel selected to be used in a power plant.


Some power plants will be forced to use coal while others use oil or gas, but this doesn’t mean that there aren’t any measures that can be put to play to decrease the operation cost.


The main thing that we all look for when choosing a certain fuel to be used in a power plant is the operating efficiency these fuels will produce.


A fuel with a higher operating efficiency will increase the overall efficiency of the plant, thus increasing the output.


If the profits are higher, we can easily manage the operating cost no matter the kind of fuel we choose to put into use.


Thanks for reading; if you have any questions, you should leave your comment. See you in my next article.


Related articles to check.

  1. Properties Of Coal Selected For Steam Power Plants
  2. Factors Affecting Combustion Efficiency Of Fuels
  3. Methods Of Conserving Electrical Energy In Power Plants
  4. 5 Disadvantages Of Liquid Fuels
  5. Pulverized Fuel Burner: Components, Types, Requirements and Working Principle

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