The smokestacks of the Candelaria power station have been a visual symbol in the skies of Tenerife since they were built in 1973 to provide energy cover to the island of Tenerife. However, in the last quarter of this year, Endesa plans to gradually demolish one of the two chimneys, an event that will mark a milestone in the energy history of the Canary Islands. Additionally, company decarbonization plans are included. Around the same time, the company also plans to dismantle the smaller of the two chimneys at the Jinámar plant in Gran Canaria, the company reports.
The two chimneys of the Candelaria plant have been out of service since October 3, 2010, ending their useful life with 20,000 hours of operation, just the operating time established by RD 430/2004, which contemplates stricter limitation regulations emissions of certain pollutants from large combustion plants.
With the dismantling of the Candelaria chimney, the complete dismantling and removal of the material from steam groups 3 and 4, both already unavailable, will also be carried out. The two groups add 487,770 hours of operation. This recall includes turbines, generators, condensers and ancillary equipment as highlights.
Toda una compleja operación de dismantelamiento sin precedentes en Canarias que cumple con los plans ya avanzados por Endesa para ir caminando en la línea de la decarbonización en Canarias y en un futuro orientado hacia las energías renovables y hacia new unidades de Generación manageables y respetuosas con el environment. The work will be carried out in different phases to make the installation as safe as possible.
The technicians announce that it will be a “complicated” dismantling which will require several actions and that it will have to be carried out by a company specialized in the treatment, segregation and recovery and then recycling of waste. In fact, in the next few days, the work will be the subject of a call for tenders.
The first step to be carried out in the dismantling will be the removal of the refractory bricks from its interior and the joints and supports that support them, through the use of interior platforms. Debris will fall into the chimney well and be removed through an opening in the lower area.
In the case of the well, it is possible to use wire cutting and the use of a crane, or the use of working platforms with robots is also considered. The definition of the method to be used will be reflected at the time of awarding the work. The budget for the execution of the work, which is currently the subject of a call for tenders, amounts to 1,097,000 euros.
The director of the Generation zone in the Canary Islands, Saúl Barrio, explains that the groups being dismantled were essential for the development of Tenerife, and that now is the time to make way for another type of low-carbon energy. “Manageable conventional energy will continue to support the transition by ensuring the quality of supply and will lose importance as the entry of renewables increases.”
Regarding the technical characteristics of the chimney to be demolished, its height of 76.5 meters stands out. The chimney has the shape of a conical trunk with a diameter of 6.22 meters at its base and 3.70 meters at its crown. The thickness of the shaft is also variable, between 0.48 meters at its base and 0.20 meters at its crown. The exterior is structured in reinforced concrete, while the interior is lined with a refractory brick lining. Environmental control workers accessed the middle height by means of a ladder and an elevator, while the crowning could only be climbed using a metal cat ladder attached to the barrel of the fireplace.
Endesa will take maximum care that the work is respectful of the environment and the physical integrity of the workers, a requirement that will be transferred both to the winning company and to the facilities themselves.
History of the Candelaria Plant
The Candelaria factory is located in the municipality of the same name, in the northwest of the island of Tenerife. It has four fuel oil, three gas turbine and three diesel units. The four steam generators each produced 40 MW of electricity. The first two entered service in 1975 and the other two in 1979 and 1984, respectively.
The first group of gas turbines, with a capacity of 37.5 MW, started operating in 1988. The second, also with a capacity of 37.5 MW, was connected to the grid in 1989. Both have been installed to replace the previous ones. A third group of 17.2 MW remains in production and started operating in 1972. These three groups use diesel as fuel.
The three diesel groups of the power station provide a power of 12 MW each. They went into production between 1972 and 1973.