A water tube boiler is such sort of boiler where the water is warmed inside tubes and the hot gasses encompass them. Actually, this boiler is just opposite of fire tube boiler where hot gasses are passed through tubes which are surrounded by water.
Advantages of Water Tube Boiler
- The larger heating surface can be achieved by using more numbers of water tubes.
- Due to conventional flow, movement of water is much faster than that of fire tube boiler, hence rate of heat transfer is high which results in higher efficiency.
- Very high pressure in the order of 140 kg/cm2 can be obtained smoothly.
Working Principle of Water Tube Boiler
The working principle of water tube boiler is very interesting and simple. Let us draw a very basic diagram of water tube boilers. It consists of mainly two drums, one is upper drum called steam drum other is lower drum called mud drum. These upper drums and lower drum are connected with two tubes namely down-comer and riser tubes as shown in the picture.
Water in the lower drum and in the riser connected to it is heated and steam is produced in them which comes to the upper drums naturally. In the upper drum, the steam is separated from water naturally and stored above the water surface. The colder water is fed from feed water inlet at the upper drum and as this water is heavier than the hotter water of lower drum and that in the riser, the colder water pushes the hotter water upwards through the riser. So there is one conventional flow of water in the boiler system. More and more steam is produced under the pressure of the closed system increases which obstructs this conventional flow of water and hence the rate of production of steam becomes slower proportionately. Again if the steam is taken through a steam outlet, the pressure inside the system falls and consequently, the conventional flow of water becomes faster which result in faster steam production rate. In this way, the water tube boiler can control its own pressure. Hence this type of boiler is referred to as the self controlled machine.
- water tube type boiler