Winterisation – Biomass Power Station

Project Outcome

The plant will remain operational throughout the winter period.  Trace heating systems will protect against frost when temperatures drop below freezing, removing any concerns with operational downtime and equipment failures.  Annual Winterisation checks highlight any system which may be in need of maintenance or replacement.

Project Rationale

As winter weather took hold plant operators became aware that some smaller diameter process piping was beginning to freeze and in turn causing issues with operations.

Project Details

  • Contract Type: Installation & Maintenance
  • Industry: Power Generation (Renewable Energy)
  • Services: Trace Heating, Winterisation
  • Application Area: Non-hazardous

Scope of Services

Our trace heating engineers applied over 700m of self-regulating heating cables to prevent small NB pipes, that are situated outside, from freezing to ensure the continuous operation of the plant during winter weather.

In addition our teams undergo annual Winterisation checks and surveys, and complete any remedial works identified during the checks. 

The table below shows results from winterisation checks carried out over a 3-year period.  Analysis of the results by our trace heating team highlighted that the integrity of several systems at this facility required maintenance and replacement of materials.


Winterisation Checks


For circuit resistance, the higher the Ω value the lower the power output of the system. Consequently, low power output means the temperature of the system will be lower, therefore the system will not be able to maintain the required temperature to stop frost taking hold, rendering it not fit-for-purpose.

The insulation resistance refers to the integrity of the insulation layer between the live cores and the external sheath. If this breaks down the element will short out to earth and will take out the circuit breaker.  If the MΩ reading decreases in value, this highlights the breaking down of the insulation layer, which if not fixed, will cause major disruptions to operations.

Site Details

  • Location: South Yorkshire, UK
  • Type: Biomass
  • Power Output: 30MW (e) & 25 MW (th)
  • Fuel: Recycled wood
  • Status During Project: Operational

The plant produces enough electricity to power approximately 40,000 homes, as well as supplying hot water for local district heating systems.


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