Industry Power GenerationPower station dynamic response optimization

The maximum megawatt ramp rate or speed of response of a power generating unit is critical to plant profitability. Faster unit response enables power stations to modulate power output, taking advantage of higher rates during peak periods to produce and sell more power while decreasing power generation during lower power demand periods.  

Dynamic response optimization is a complex endeavor as many process variables are coupled and have constraints. These constraints are typically mechanical and thermal and excursions outside these boundaries result in a power station trip will accelerate equipment wear and plant heat rate. Examples of hard constraints include furnace pressure operation under a vacuum or required boiler drum levels that operate at pre-defined high and low limits.

With existing commonly used process dynamics and control logic, the operation team selects a conservative value for a megawatt ramp rate to ensure the continued operation of a power plant.  For example, a power plant might limit its MW ramp to 3MW/min based on the fact that a faster ramp rate would put the station at risk of high drum level tip.

In an Enero Performance Project, the optimization work consists of implementing advanced model-based control logic allowing the drum level to operate closer to setpoint which enables operators to select a faster unit ramp rate thereby improving the power station’s profitability.


Enero Solutions consultants have the experience to improve power station control through the implementation of Advanced Process and Control technologies to manage the following key processes:

  • Furnace Draft Control
  • Excess Air and Combustion processes
  • Duct Burner Load Management
  • NOx Emissions
  • Power Augmentation
  • Biomass Controls
  • Biogas Controls
  • Drum Level
  • Steam Temperature
  • Steam Governor Controls and Integration

For more information:

Enero Solutions for Power Generation brochure