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3.4.2 Utilisation Of Seawater For Power Station Cooling
Seawater is used for power station cooling in place of freshwater.
Extent of Use
The nuclear power station at Koeberg (Western Cape Province, South
Africa) is cooled by seawater.
Operation and Maintenance
Qualified and skilled personnel are required to operate and maintain
this technology, which requires an high level of maintenance due to the
corrosivity of seawater.
Level of Involvement
This technology is operated at the indistry level by a power utility.
Cost data are not available for this technology. However, the initial
construction of this system, which requires corrosion resistant piping and
pumps, has high capital costs. Once installed, however, the running costs
of this system are low.
Effectiveness of the Technology
The technology eliminates the use of freshwater for cooling, thereby
freeing these resources for other uses.
This technology is appropriate for use in countries which have a
coastline. It is especially appropriate for use in the nuclear power
industry or other industries with an high demand for cooling water.
There are few environmental hazards resulting from the technique,
although, in the nuclear power industry, there may be concern over the
discharge of radionuclides to the environment in the event of an accident.
There may also be concerns regarding thermal pollution if the cooling
systems are operated as through flow systems.
Freshwater resources are freed for other uses.
Use of this technology is limited by the requirement that the industry
be in close proximity to the sea.
No cultural problems have been noted.
Department of Water Affairs 1986. Management of the Water Resources
of the Republic of South Africa, Government Printer, Pretoria.