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Heating Systems - Steam and Condensate Loads

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The two basic situations common when calculating steam and condensate loads in steam heated systems are

  • heat transfer through areas
  • heating up materials

Heat Transfer through Areas

Heat transfer through areas can be expressed as:

Q = U A dt                              (1)


Q = quantity of heat transferred trough the area

U = heat transfer coefficient

A = heat transfer area

dt = temperature difference between the steam and the secondary heated fluid

Heating up Materials

The heat needed to heat up materials can be expressed as:

Q = w cp (t2 - t1)                               (2)


w = weight of material

cp = specific heat of the heated material (Check Material Properties to find specific heat for materials)

t1 = initial temperature of the heated material

t2 = final temperature of the heated material

Heat Rate

The heat rate is the heat transferred per unit of time.

Heat Transfer Rate through Areas

The formula for calculating the heat transfer rate for heat transfer through an area can be expressed as:

Q' = Q / (L h) = U A dt /(L h)                                  (3)


L = Latent heat of evaporated (condensation) steam (Check Steam Tables to find latent heat, SI or Imperial Units)

h = available time

Heat Transfer Rate when heating up Materials

The formula for calculating the heat transfer rate for heating up materials can be expressed as:

Q' = Q / (L h) = w cp (t2 - t1) /(L h)                                     (3b)

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Related Topics

Steam and Condensate

Design of steam & condensate systems with properties, capacities, sizing of pipe lines, system configuration and more.

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Heat loss from steam pipes generates condensate which must be drained from the system - imperial units.

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Steam - Flow vs. kW Rating

Calculate steam flow rate vs. kW rating.

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Calculate steam heated air systems.

Steam Heating Processes - Load Calculating

Calculating the amount of steam in non-flow batch and continuous flow heating processes.

Steam Heating Systems - Classifications

Steam systems carries heat through pipes from the boiler to consumers as heat exchangers, process equipment etc.

Transmission Heat Loss through Building Elements

Heat loss through common building elements due to transmission, R-values and U-values - imperial and SI units.

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