Abbott Power Plant’s 77-year-old south stack will be taken down in much the same way it went up, one piece at a time. Crews this month began preparations to disassemble the 197-foot concrete stack at the plant, located on the U. of I. campus at 1117 S. Oak St. The work is expected to end this summer.
Abbott Power Plant in July 1940.
Image provided by Facilities and Services.
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The recently decommissioned stack and two 1970s boilers will be replaced with two new low-emission, high-efficiency gas boilers with shorter stacks. The new boilers are scheduled to begin operating in December. Steam and electricity production service to campus buildings and plant access for educational tours and research will not be affected by the work.
“This is a significant step in a five-year project to increase steam production capacity, improve plant reliability and energy efficiency and further reduce emissions,” said Mike Larson, the director of utilities production for Facilities and Services at Illinois.
Specially trained, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency-certified crews from Omega Demolition will dismantle the stack by constructing climbing work platforms and moving the structures down as work progresses.
Built in 1941, the plant supplies 88 percent of the energy demand for the campus. The cogeneration facility simultaneously produces both steam and electricity for the campus, with more than 250 buildings using the steam for heating. The north stack, used by other existing boilers, won’t be affected by the project.
More information is available online.