The first gas-turbine user group known to the editors got its start in the US in the mid-1970s. It provided valuable experience on the operation and maintenance of these relatively new prime movers, which were ordered by electric utilities in large numbers following the Northeast Blackout of 1965. Back then the dominant engines for power production were Pratt & Whitney’s FT4 and General Electric’s Frame 5.
With world leaders in the development of industrial GTs—GE and Westinghouse Electric Corp—headquartered here, where natural-gas transmission lines moved fuel over long distances relatively inexpensively and additional capacity always was needed, larger and more efficient engines debuted regularly, promoting a need for user groups to facilitate technical communication among the owner/operators. Meetings of these organizations attracted 60-Hz users from around the world.
But what about 50-Hz users? Until recently, there was no efficient way for CCJ ONsite to follow the frame-specific experience of these owner/operators, most meetings being small and geographically dispersed. However, over the last several years, the Finnish organization GTUsers.com has built a loyal following among European, Asian, and Middle Eastern owner/operators who regularly participate in its online and face-to-face conferences. CCJ ONsite and GTUsers.com are working collaboratively to help users share experiences globally.
Here are some facts about the V fleet to keep in mind as you read through the first part of this report (Part II, focusing on 60-Hz engines, will appear in our next edition):
- There are about 1000 V engines operating worldwide. This total includes both E- and F-class models operating at 50 and 60 Hz, providing plenty of experiences to share across national borders.
- Two OEMs manufacture 50-Hz V engines, Siemens and Ansaldo Energia. The engine designations for Siemens machines are V94.2 (SGT5-2000E) and V94.3A (SGT5-4000F); for Ansaldo engines, AE94.2 and AE94.3A. Roughly 80% of all V machines in service were made by Siemens, most of the remainder by Ansaldo under a Siemens license.
- com has hosted web meetings for 50-Hz V users since 2009, face-to-face meetings since 2014. The 2020 conference of the V94.3A users is scheduled for Prague, Czechia, October 12-15; the V94.2 meeting, Prague, Czechia, November 9-12.
What follows are summary notes from the 2019 V user conferences in Europe, a plant best practice from the V94.2-powered Amman East combined cycle, and a technology update from ARNOLD Group, one of the leading third-party service providers for the V fleet. Use the links below to quickly locate content of greatest interest.