Plant & Works Engineering
Embracing MCPD
Published:  18 July, 2018

In a move that sees Fulton fully embrace the requirements of the Medium Combustion Plant Directive (MCPD), the company has announced a series of plans – including a review of its product portfolio – to strengthen its position as a leading global provider of heat transfer solutions. PWE reports on the plans.

Applicable throughout Europe, the MCPD has been introduced to improve air quality by reducing emissions from any new combustion plant or generator rated between 1MW and 50MW by December 2018 and, depending on size, existing plant by 2025 and 2030.

Realising the implications the MCPD will have on its fuel-fired steam boiler portfolio, Fulton went back to the drawing board and, by adopting a new ‘PURE Technology’ initiative, the VSRT – the world’s first Vertical Spiral Ribbed Tubeless steam boiler – emerged and features a design that is durable and long-lasting; and boasts higher efficiencies and reduces NOx emissions to levels that exceed the requirements of the MCPD. And while the requirements of the MCPD do not apply to some of its smaller models, Fulton’s says its new VSRT range has been designed to not only meet, but exceed the requirements set out by the new directive.

The time, effort and resources committed into the development of the VSRT has led to Fulton review and strategically rationalise its product offering. This, coupled with the effects of the MCPD, means that Fulton will now be concentrating its efforts on the VSRT and its range of electric steam boilers, ancillary equipment and skid-mounted solutions. It also means that, having pioneered the design more than 70 years ago, the company will cease manufacturing vertical tubeless steam boilers – including its renowned J Series – in the UK.

Commenting, Fulton managing director Carl Knight said: “Unfortunately, and like other UK-based manufacturers, ceasing to produce reverse-flame and standard vertical tubeless steam boilers in the UK has implications for our workforce and we have already entered into a consultation process with employees.

“While regrettable, this is no reflection on our UK-based employees or the performance of the Bristol facility, it is born from the need to consolidate activities amongst Fulton’s other Global manufacturing facilities to achieve operational and organisational efficiencies.”

He goes on to say that ceasing to manufacture in the UK has been a very difficult decision to make. The J Series has been the mainstay of the company for a long time, but with the introduction of the MCPD, Fulton has, like many other manufacturers, had to revise and rationalise its product offering to ensure the future of the company, which will remain a strategic player as it looks to promote the VSRT to new and existing global markets, including those in Europe, the Middle East and other export markets.

As part of its review, Fulton has committed itself to the continued support of all products through its ongoing service and spares programmes and has, in fact, increased its service engineering team by 40%. The company also continues to provide certified steam operator, steam systems, boiler maintenance and water treatment training.

Looking to the future, Carl Knight adds that Fulton UK will be importing VSRT boilers from Fulton USA, with both companies having worked closely to ensure that the all-new steam boiler is constructed to meet the requirements of the PED and to obtain all other approvals necessary for the UK and export markets. This approach leverages significant manufacturing investments already made in the US, as well as the volume-based economies of scale achieved in the US production facility.

The VSRT holds enormous potential for Fulton. Knight explained: “The VSRT is the world’s first fully-wetted, refractory-free, tubeless steam boiler. It is market-leading in all value attributes and leapfrogs the competition in the critical aspects of energy efficiency, emissions, footprint, reliability and durability.” He added: “In the USA, market response to the VSRT has been overwhelming and, with more than 15 patents pending, is expected to provide Fulton with a global leadership position in steam boilers for decades to come.”