The dry/wet loading cycle in cooling towers provides an ideal environment for corrosion of the structure. Many of these cooling towers are constructed with concrete, and the reinforcing steel corrodes after a short service life. In addition, larger cooling towers such as those used in the nuclear power industry include concrete beams and columns in the interior of the tower that corrode rapidly. Repairs must consider both a reinforcement scheme to replenish the area of steel lost to corrosion, and a protection mechanism to slow down the future corrosion rate of these elements.
FRP fabrics and PileMedic® laminates can be used to achieve both of the above objectives. QuakeWrap engineers will calculate the number of layers and orientation of the fiber for each element to restore the original strength or provide additional strength beyond the original values. The same FRP fabric or laminate also will serve as a moisture barrier preventing influx of moisture and oxygen. It is a recognized fact that oxygen is the fuel to the corrosion process. By eliminating the inflow of oxygen, the corrosion process is brought to a virtual halt.
Features & Benefits
Advantages of repair of cooling towers with FRP include:
- Beams and columns can be repaired with FRP
- Minimal increase in member size (typically ½ inch (12mm))
- Repairs are fast and often completed during scheduled shutdowns
- Ideal for spot repair of only damaged areas
- FRP will serve as a moisture barrier to protect the beams and columns against future corrosion
- Finished installation can be painted, making it hardly visible