A system for detection and control of deposition on pendant tubes in recovery and power boilers includes one or more deposit monitoring sensors operating in infrared regions of about 4 or 8.7 microns and directly producing images of the interior of the boiler, or producing feeding signals to a data processing system for information to enable a distributed control system by which the boilers are operated to operate said boilers more efficiently. The data processing system includes an image pre-processing circuit in which a 2-D image formed by the video data input is captured, and includes a low pass filter for performing noise filtering of said video input. It also includes an image compensation system for array compensation to correct for pixel variation and dead cells, etc., and for correcting geometric distortion. An image segmentation module receives a cleaned image from the image pre-processing circuit for separating the image of the recovery boiler interior into background, pendant tubes, and deposition. It also accomplishes thresholding/clustering on gray scale/texture and makes morphological transforms to smooth regions, and identifies regions by connected components. An image-understanding unit receives a segmented image sent from the image segmentation module and matches derived regions to a 3-D model of said boiler. It derives a 3-D structure the deposition on pendant tubes in the boiler and provides the information about deposits to the plant distributed control system for more efficient operation of the plant pendant tube cleaning and operating systems.
The U.S. Government has a paid-up license in this invention and the right in limited circumstances to require the patent owner to license others on reasonable terms as provided for by the terms of Contract No. DE-FC36-99G010375 by the Department of Energy.