CCJ’s 3Q 2012 Issue

SPECIAL REPORT: The Venerable Frame 5 Gas Turbine

> If the energy industry has an iconic gas turbine (GT), the consensus view probably would be GE Power & Water’s durable Frame 5. It certainly has stood the test of time: The first unit in this model series shipped from the OEM’s Schenectady factory 55 years ago and Frame 5s are still being built today—albeit by manufacturing associates abroad and at ratings about two and a half times those of the early engines.

In between, well over 3000 of these machines were assembled and shipped in both single- and two-shaft versions for electric-generation (50 and 60 Hz) and mechanical-drive applications. Units in generation service are found in simple-cycle, cogeneration, and combined-cycle facilities. They are installed both onshore and offshore (oil rigs, barges) and may be equipped for single- or dual-fuel firing.

Frame 5 Special Report Contents

History in the making

Sidebar 1: Two-shaft Frame 5s drive compressors, pumps, generators

Frame 5 major surprise

Sidebar 2: Backgrounder on Central Vermont Public Service Frame 5s

Sidebar 3: How to remove buckets rusted into turbine discs

Weak ankle

Inspect regularly

Controls retrofits

Fuel system upgrade

End-of-life inspection

Coordinate generator, engine overhauls, upgrades
by Paul Heikkinen and Phil Karwowski, TurboCare Group 

> The Frame 5 gas turbine originally was manufactured by General Electric Co and subsequently produced by GE and its licensees—including Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd, John Brown Engineering Gas Turbines Ltd, Hitachi Ltd, Alstom Power, and Nuovo Pignone SpA (later acquired by GE). more

Make a Frame 5 generator ‘new’ in 15 easy steps

> Your Frame 5 generator may be a classic—between 20 and 40 years old—perhaps even an antique (over 40). Physical age doesn’t matter much in most cases because these machines were designed conservatively, constructed with craftsmanship, and built to last. How long it pays to keep Frame 5s older than about 25 years in service continues to be a question on the minds of asset owners. Many had been content with just letting these workhorses run down to retirement. But that was before their value increased as ancillary-services providers for regional grids challenged to maintain system stability in the new era of must-take renewables. more

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FEATURES

WATER CHEMISTRY

Minimize operational risk with an onsite chemist
by David Addison and Judy Weir, Thermal Chemistry Ltd

> Powerplant chemists are responsible for minimizing corrosion- and deposition-related failures in combined-cycle facilities. Their demonstrated positive impact on operations contributes significantly to plant efforts aimed at achieving top performance—a fact that often is not fully appreciated by station management.  more

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GAS TURBINES

Borescope inspections offer insights for condition-based maintenance

> Plant managers, particularly those responsible for combined cycles, need all the help they can get. Their jobs have become ever-more demanding because of increasing regulation, relentless corporate pressure to reduce costs, loss of experienced personnel to retirement, etc.  more

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2012 PACESETTER PLANTS

UT-Austin’s Carl J Eckhardt Heating and Power Complex

Optimization programs pay big dividends for campus utilities
by Jason Makansi, Pearl Street Inc

> The University of Texas at Austin (UT) began a major expansion of campus utilities back in the mid-1990s. Today, the Utilities & Energy Management Dept (UEMD) provides all of the heating, cooling, and electric service for university’s 18 million ft2 of conditioned space. With 50,000 students and 20,000 staff, think of the challenge as supplying the comfort for a small city.  more

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Ontelaunee Energy Center

Teamwork brings major HRSG repair project in on schedule, at budget

> Ontelaunee Energy Center (OEC) is the quintessence of a “bubble” plant. The nominal 550-MW, 2 × 1 combined cycle, powered by W501FD2 gas turbines, was designed by WorleyParsons Group Inc for base-load service. It began commercial operation late in 2002- the middle of the bubble. The Reading, Pa, plant was commissioned by Calpine Corp and cycled daily, or less frequently, until relatively recently. OEC was bought by LS Power Equity Partners in October 2005 when Calpine was forced into bankruptcy and resold a year later to Dynegy Inc. Today it is managed by Dynegy Power LLC.  more

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USER GROUP ROUNDUPS

WESTERN TURBINE USERS

The nitty gritty of aero engine O&M

> The first part of the CCJ’s report on the 22nd annual meeting of the Western Turbine Users Inc, held at the Pasadena (Calif) Convention Center last March 18 – 21, was published in the 1Q/2012 issue, available at www.ccj-online.com. This part of the report digs into the details of top discussion topics aired during the breakout sessions for the LM2500, LM5000, LM6000, and LMS100 engines, as well as during the special technical presentations session conducted on Tuesday afternoon, after the exhibition closed.  more

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Frame 6 Users Group

Presentations by Shuman, Tucker get meeting moving on a fast track

> Knowledgeable opening-day speakers passionate about the technologies in their fields of expertise are critical to the success of user-group conferences. They stimulate thinking and discussion that can keep participants energized until the closing bell. The steering committee for the Frame 6 Users Group invited two of the industry’s best—Alfred Shuman and Paul Tucker—to participate in its 2012 Conference. Shuman, a senior consulting engineer for PAL Turbine Services LLC, Clifton Park, NY (near Albany), and Tucker, the founder/president of First Independent Rotor Services of Texas (FIRST), Humble, Tex, are experts on GE legacy frame gas turbines with decades of hands-on experience each. more

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501D5-D5A Users

Shop tours, robust discussion highlight 16th annual meeting

> Robust presentations and group discussions, and tours of three manufacturing and repair facilities, combined to make the 501D5-D5A Users’ 16th Annual Conference and Vendor Fair a valuable learning experience. A significant portion of the technical exchange between the OEM and owner/operators, and among the two-score users in closed sessions, focused on rotor-related issues—vibration in particular. The 2012 meeting was held in early June at the Charlotte (NC) City Center Marriott. more

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Miscellany

2012 PACESETTER AWARDS

Empowered staff, technology underpin top plants

> Top plants don’t just happen. They are a product of teamwork among groups of talented individuals responsible for design, construction, operation, and maintenance—people who take nothing for granted, question everything, and give full professional and personal commitment to the tasks at hand.  more

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Business partners 

> Latest news from the user group scene including company and association news. more

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Upcoming 2013 user group meetings

> We are merely two months away from 2013’s first user group meetings Don’t you think it is about time to get registered and reserve that hotel room? Here’s the where, when, and how. more

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