Frame 7EA Users Group Conference

PSG will be exhibiting at this year’s Frame 7EA Users Group Conference in Garden Grove, California on Tuesday, October 9th. We will be at Booth #46 and are looking forward to discussing our recent 7EA projects with you. Safe Travels and see you in California!

Set IGVs for Maximum Efficiency

Have your combustion turbines been losing power after overhauls? There are many factors which can affect power production, but the IGV settings are one area that even the OEM can overlook.

We recently helped a plant with three GE Frame 6B gas turbines that had lost power over successive overhauls. Units 1 and 2 had been overhauled by the OEM in the last few years and Unit 3 had been overhauled in 2006 by a competitor. All three units had been experiencing an unexplained loss of power.

A gas turbine needs to breathe air – and a lot of it – to make horsepower. The inlet guide vanes (IGVs) on a heavy duty gas turbine are designed to modulate (open and close) in response to commands from the control system to regulate this air flow. These commands control turbine exhaust temperature, protect against a compressor “stall” or “surge” (extremely damaging to the compressor blading), and other controlling functions. The IGVs look like little airplane wings that rotate or pivot to allow more or less air into the compressor. They are calibrated to the turbine control system by measuring the actual vane angles with a machinist’s protractor and inputting the readings into the control system. This lets the electronic controls know physically where they are so that the system can properly control the unit.

On checking Unit 1 and 2, the IGV calibration was significantly out of calibration. Unit 3 wasn’t as bad but it was also slightly out of calibration., We accurately calibrated the IGV’s to the OEM control specifications on all three units.

The results of this work were impressive. The heat rate (fuel efficiency) improved on Unit 1 by about 2%, gained 2.5 mw on Unit 2 and 0.5 mw on Unit 3. This made a significant contribution to the customer’s bottom line at the expense of just a few days of work.

The IGV calibrations are just one of the critical instruments or calibrations that could affect power production. Contact PSG® for a full analysis of any reductions to the heat rate or power output of your turbine

Enter to Win a 30 oz. YETI Rambler!

All you need to do is take a photo of Mr. Turbine somewhere – at your facility, in a restaurant, at an event, on vacation, etc… use your imagination! Once we receive your photo we will enter you to win a 30 oz. YETI Rambler at our next drawing. All photos should be submitted to inquiries@powerservicesgroup.com by September 30th, and we will do a random drawing on October 1st for three winners. If you are one of the winners, we will ship the YETI directly to your address. Just snap a photo and send it via email and you’re entered to win!

Here are some other places Mr. Turbine as been spotted recently:

ANS Utility Working Conference & Vendor Technology Expo

We look forward to seeing everyone at this year’s ANS Utility Working Conference & Vendor Technology Expo in Amelia Island, Florida. It should be another fun event. Please stop by the Power Services Group booth in the exhibit hall when you get a chance. Mike Ballard will be in attendance representing PSG and will be looking forward to meeting everyone.

We will be raffling off a YETI Cooler at the booth, please drop off your business card for a chance to win.

Safe Travels and see you next week!

AEP Go Forum

Stop by and visit us at the AEP Go Forum!

Stationary Blade Restoration

During the most recent outage season, PSG was contracted to perform the in-place restoration of stationary blades on an 800MW Steam Turbine for a large power producer in the United States.  The customer was looking for a solution where the blades could be restored without completely disassembling the unit and sending the components to a shop – enabling them to save valuable generation time and significant expense.  Our Field Machining Division mobilized our specialized technicians and equipment and began the detailed process of restoring the blades, ultimately returning them to operating specifications.

The customer was extremely pleased with the outcome of the project and commented on the high-quality craftsmanship displayed by our technicians.  This is another example of the complicated turbine repairs we can perform on-site, and a testament to the quality of our execution personnel.

Measure the Cause, Not the Symptom

Directly measuring bearing metal temperature is the most effective way to really determine if a bearing is running hot. Bearing oil drain temperatures are still being utilized on older machines. By the time the bearing oil drain temperature has increased, the bearing may have already been compromised (wiped). PSG recommends that these older machines should have temperature probes (thermocouples or RTD’s) installed in the bearing Babbitt to properly monitor performance. A two-level alarm is recommended (not automatic trip). The first alarm should be set a few degrees above the highest temperature in the recommended normal operating range. Operators should closely monitor bearing temperature after the first alarm sounds. If the temperature rises abruptly and unexpectedly, the bearing may have been compromised and immediate action needs to be taken. Gradual temperature changes which trigger the alarm may be the result of other factors but are still a concern and should be thoroughly investigated. The second alarm should be set at the maximum operating temperature of the bearing material. Operators should manually trip the unit in a controlled manner as soon as possible after this second alarm sounds and determine the cause. The critical temperatures for each of the two levels can be supplied by the manufacturer or recommended by PSG for your individual unit configuration. Different temperature ranges are recommended for Tilt Pad, Elliptical, Short Elliptical and Thrust bearings. Measuring drain oil temperature is too slow and too imprecise to effectively minimize your overall cost of maintenance. Retrofit your machine and save your bottom line.

Spill Strip Installation

We are in the process of installing new spill strips for an industrial GE Steam Turbine. Very nice work by our Steam Path Repair facility in Pevely, Missouri.

69th Annual AREGC Conference

We are at the 69th Annual AREGC Conference in Lanier Islands, Georgia this week.  Please stop by and visit us if you are attending.  This year’s conference is being hosted by Oglethorpe Power Corporation.  Thank you to all those who organized the event!

New 1st Stage Bucket Installation

PSG’s Steam Path Repair Facility, located just outside of St. Louis, Missouri, has been busy this spring.  One of the many projects we executed last month was the installation of new 1st stage buckets on an industrial GE Steam Turbine.  The time and precision it takes to successfully install these buckets is extremely impressive.  The meticulous attention to detail by our trained technicians allowed us to complete the installation safely, on-time, and with the highest level of quality.  Great work team!