CCJ Archives: 4Q 2009

How to inspect, replace GT exhaust system components

By David Clarida, Integrity Power Solutions LLC

You don’t have to visit many generating facilities pow­ered by gas turbines (GTs) or attend many user-group meetings to realize that exhaust sys­tems get little or no respect. These relatively simple systems essentially consist of metal components and insulation arranged to direct nomi­nal 1000F gas exiting an engine to a heat-recovery steam generator (HRSG), or stack, while protecting personnel. more

Assure peak performance from RO membranes

Reverse osmosis (RO) plays a vital role in most powerplant water treatment systems today, particularly those serving gas-turbine-based generating facilities (Fig 1). It is used in the pro­duction of water for power enhance­ment (evaporative coolers, fogging) and emissions reduction, makeup for heat-recovery steam generators, treatment of plant wastewater, etc. more

7F Users Group: Repairing second-stage nozzles

Robust repair fundamen­tals for 7FA (GE Energy, Atlanta) second-stage tur­bine nozzles was the subject of an invited vendor presentation before the 7F Users Group last May. It was one of 18 half-hour presen­tations by equipment and services providers arranged in three par­allel sessions of six papers each. more

In the boiler business, this is front-page news

Species evolve in less time than innovations in boiler design – or so it seems. Proof includes the 1895 edition of Babcock & Wilcox Co’s Steam here in the office, which describes boilers familiar to this editor. So when Bob Krowech, president of HRST Inc, Eden Prairie, Minn, called two years ago to say he had something new to talk about regarding the design of economizers for heat-recovery steam generators (HRSGs), the editors stopped work… more

User group gets an assist on fan gearbox lube-oil solution

Attendance by owner/opera­tors at user-group meetings typically was down about 10% in 2009 compared to 2008. The reason generally given was “budget cuts,” which seemed short-sighted. People in authority who think they are positively impacting the plant budget with a $1500 cut (about what it costs to send someone to a meeting sponsored by an inde­pendent user group) might reconsid­er their position. more

Mobile classroom: Bring training facilities to plant personnel

How about this for a perfect storm: Experienced person­nel retiring, plant budgets decreasing, skills of new hires typically lacking. That seems to be a fair assessment of industry conditions judging from discussions at user-group meetings. How can your company survive this storm and prosper? more

Recovering from a wreck

Darayus Pardivala, pres­ident, Sulzer Turbo Ser­vices, took a call in his La Porte (Tex) office last sum­mer from a North American custom­er that had recently suffered damage to one of its 501FD2 gas turbines. The caller, who asked that neither he nor his company or plant be men­tioned publicly, said an R1 turbine blade fractured and traveled down­stream. He was afraid that the rotor might have been severely damaged in the accident and wanted Pardiva­la’s team to assess its condition and report its findings within 10 days. more

Fluid analysis critical to maximizing lube-oil service life

Gene Wagenseller, CLS, OMA II, Analysts Inc

Gas turbine firing tempera­tures continue to increase as OEMs relentlessly chase efficiency improve­ments. This demands that lubricant manufacturers formulate products capable of withstanding the more rigorous service conditions. Com­pounding the challenge are the owner/operators, who want turbine oils to last longer. more

Bypass noise: How low can you go?

The electric power industry is only now beginning to learn what it needs to know about the design, operation, and maintenance of air-cooled condens­ers (ACCs)-or so it appears. This is a bold statement given the first direct air-cooled plant installed in the US, the 18-MW coal-fired Neil Simpson Unit 1, began commercial operation 40 years ago. The Black Hills Power facility in Wyoming is still in service. more

Paradigm shift

Most people would agree that business is in a con­tinual state of change; also, that human beings typically prefer to maintain the status quo. One of the many respon­sibilities of business leaders is to drive change, to keep their com­panies competitive. This often requires forcing employees outside of their comfort zones to participate in the process. Some are unable to do this and they move on. New tal­ent injected into the organization contributes to the cultural evolution necessary to propel the business forward. more

Repair or upgrade, what’s the best strategy for your control system?

Repair or upgrade, what’s the best strategy for your control system?

If you haven’t thought much about your legacy DCS lately, perhaps it’s time to stop pro­crastinating and face reality. The system is age­ing rapidly in control-sys­tem terms and your reliabil­ity risk is increasing-day by day. more

Share the dream

Walter N Lockwood, Consultant

“Great expectations are confirmation of great respect.”
-Warren Bennis

“Josh Reith has accept­ed our offer to come here as a shift supervi­sor! He is a top-quality guy who will do great things for us. Josh is a no-nonsense engineer who stands heads and shoulders above his peers and he’s one of those peo­ple who always will do more than expected-Josh will take charge. more

Rusty wrestles a shark

Justin was a lawyer turned pow­erplant owner who eliminated the O&M crew to cut cost. He had gone twenty-nine days now with­out any trouble.

But on the thirtiety day, he heard a rumble in the gas-turbine exhaust. Worried by the noise, he whipped out his Crackberry and contacted the Remote Monitoring Center. The engineers crunching data and algo­rithms in Bangalore told him the gas-turbine combustor must be out-of-tune—something common to DLN units like his. more