CCJ Archives: 2Q 2010

Transforming a steam plant into a full-service utility

Cornell University has a respected engineering school and many people on campus – faculty and stu­dents alike – know a thing or two about thermodynamics, plus there are others who are very knowledge­able in the environmental sciences. So it was only a matter of time before the Ithaca campus’s conventional steam plant, which burned coal as its primary fuel, would undergo major renovation to improve efficiency and reduce pollutant emissions. more

Special Report: Air Inlet System 

Air inlet houses seldom get the respect they deserve. Properly equipped and maintained, they help assure maximum output and high availability of your gas turbines (GTs). Yet they are almost an afterthought at many plants, the focus being on rotating equipment.

Inspection and Filtration

Evap Coolers and Fogging

Chillers

 

P91 commands respect

Dean Motl called about the time of the spring equinox to say New Harquahala, the plant he manages, was inspecting P91 piping and found some off-spec material that he thought the industry might want to know about. more

A great leap forward

With apologies to George Bernard Shaw, consider that combined-heat-and-power plants (CHP) and utility-class combined cycles are two types of gas-turbine-based generating facilties separated by a common tech­nology. Both require the same level of engineering expertise to design and build, but cycle complexity and size differ markedly because of specific needs and operational goals. more

Assets well cared for get better with age

Stony Brook Energy Center is not your typical gas-turbine-powered generating station (Fig 1). Most of the nation’s combined cycles were built dur­ing and after the bubble of the late 1990s/early 2000s basically by set­ting equipment on a slab of concrete in a vacant field and wrapping the package with architectural siding. Nothing special. more

Don’t accept poor starting reliability

By Brent A Gregory, Creative Power Solutions

Some power producers want to believe that gas-turbine-based generating facilities don’t require a rigorous engineering effort at the design/specification stage of a project. Given that the track record of gas turbines for land-based generation service industry-wide is excellent, and that GTs are “standard” facto­ry-assembled machines, it’s no won­der that executives who majored in business and finance think buying a gas turbine is not much different than buying a new corporate limo: Sign the papers, pay, and you’re ready to go. more

Sharing knowledge globally

The HRSG User’s Group is well known to readers as the “go-to” organization in the US for information on heat-recovery steam generators and other Rankine Cycle equipment used in combined-cycle plants. The group meets annually and attracts about 350 participants to its conference and exposition. Some attendees come from nations outside North America, but not many. more

Integrating solar, conventional energy resources

By Thomas F Armistead, Consulting Editor

“When the sun shineth, make hay” is an ancient proverb recently updated to “make electricity.” Combined-cycle (CC) plants are critical to this goal with an innovative approach that augments the heat-recovery steam generator’s (HRSG) output with steam generated using solar-ther­mal energy. One plant has been online in Morocco since May; two others in North Africa and one in Florida will enter com­mercial operation this year as well. more

A cornucopia of ideas for improving plant perfomance, safety

Personnel at gas-turbine-based powerplants face chal­lenges daily that some oth­ers in the electric-generation sector might not experience even once in an entire career. The typical 2 × 1 F-class combined cycle produces a nominal 500 MW with two-dozen or fewer employees—barely enough to respond to the dispatch demands of grid operators who rely on GTs to assure system reliability. more