Sunday, 2 August 2020

Ince B Control Block, Cheshire


Ince B Power Station built as part of the Dash for Oil in the UK during the 1960s, schemed as being a base load operating power station. The choice of the Ince site for a large new oil-fired station was politically influenced as the government wanted a station in the North West of England, which led to a rumour that the power station was built with the only purpose of creating jobs.

The station's construction suffered lengthy delays. Its transmission system was inadequate to handle the large flow of electricity from the nuclear power stations to the north. There were also faults with the station's rotors, which required them returning to the manufacturer's works. The station eventually used two notional spares. Low productivity among construction staff was also a problem, almost leading to the abandonment of the project. The station had eventually begun operating by March 1984, when it achieved the second-highest thermal efficiency in the country for a plant of its size, after Pembroke Power Station in Wales.

The station occupied a 125-acre (0.51 km2) site. Its boiler house measured 102.5 m (336 ft) by 49.5 m (162 ft) and was 61 m (200 ft) tall. The turbine hall was 123 m (404 ft) by 60 m (200 ft) and 32 m (105 ft) tall. There were two boilers rated at 447 kg/s, steam conditions were 158.58 bar at 538 °C with reheat to 538 °C. There were two 500-MW Parsons generators, along with two 25-MW Avon gas turbines. In 1993, one of the station's two units, Unit 5, was converted to burn orimulsion, its boilers being provided by Clarke Chapman Ltd. The station B had a single 152.5 m (500 ft) chimney, with a diameter of 12.5 m (41 ft) which tapered to 7.6 m (25 ft). The station used a single hyperboloid induced draft cooling tower, which stood 116.7 m (383 ft) tall.

Fuel oil was supplied directly to the station by a pipeline, directly from Shell's Stanlow Oil Refinery. Oil was also brought to the station by ship, via a berth on the Manchester Ship Canal.

The station was controlled by two GEC 2050 computers.

The B Station ceased generating electricity in March 1997 and demolition of the structures commenced a couple of years later. The station's chimney was demolished on 28 April 1999. The station's cooling tower was demolished on 5 December 1999 along with the A Station's remaining cooling tower.


Esoteric Eric

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