POWER [January, 15 2008]

Cover Stories

Greater fuel diversity needed to meet growing U.S. electricity demand

Industrial Info Resources’ strengths are tracking capital projects and cost projections and providing intelligence about the power generation market, among others. IIR has used its large industry databases and numerous industry contacts to develop its outlook for 2008. Here’s what you should expect and plan for this year.

Regulatory risks paralyzing power industry while demand grows

In our second annual report on the state and future of the U.S. power generation industry, we combine the considerable experience of POWER’s editorial staff with the market savvy of Industrial Info Resources Inc. (see next story) to preview the industry’s direction in 2008. We anticipate that the specter of carbon control legislation will hobble coal and make renewables the hot ticket while nukes continue to inch forward in a generation market that is basically treading water.

Features

Costlier, scarcer supplies dictate making thermal plants less thirsty

The Energy Information Administration estimates that U.S. thermoelectric generating capacity will grow from 709 GW in 2005 to 862 GW in 2030 to help meet annual demand increases of 2%. The makeup and cooling water needed by plants generating that increased capacity certainly won’t be available from withdrawal sources, so plant developers and owners will have to apply water-stingy technologies plantwide. As is usually the case, conservation saves money as well as the environment. Here’s a thumbnail economic analysis of some solutions to the water problem.

Eliminating oil whip–induced vibration after a steam turbine retrofit

Nobody expected driveline vibration to occur after a flawless retrofit of a 200-MW steam turbine. But when it did, Mitsubishi Power Systems and Exelon vibration specialists identified the symptoms and rapidly narrowed the list of possible causes. Confounding factors made the root cause difficult to identify, but the experts pinpointed the problem, made necessary hardware modifications, and placed the turbine back in service in a week.

Protecting plant equipment from voltage sags

Immunity from voltage sags is vital for reliable operation of our ever-more-sophisticated electronic controls and equipment. Every electrical product should be able to ride through typical voltage sags, but in many cases the first sag test occurs after equipment is installed and in operation. Select the appropriate sag immunity specification and equipment compliance testing, and you’ll be glad you did.

Workforce analysis: Replacing management by fad with management certainty

The biggest problem facing industrial managers is ensuring that they’ll continue to have a skilled workforce. With so many people nearing retirement, organizational skills are at risk, which poses a direct threat to operations. Many companies are making big investments to capture the unique knowledge and experience of graybeards before they move on. But that is just one aspect of a far more complex issue.

Departments

Commentary

U.S. nuclear power’s time has come—again

In the U.S. today, there are continual discussions about energy independence, energy security, and ways to slow climate change. But meeting the nation’s projected 40% increase in electricity demand by…

New Products

Legal & Regulatory

One-size RPS does not fit all

The U.S. Congress continues to debate proposals that would mandate that a set amount of the nation’s electricity come from renewable energy sources such as wind, the sun, or biomass.…

Focus on O&M

Focus on O&M (January 2008)

Single-window control of CHP plant's energy converters / Safety stuffers entertain as they inform / Doubling up for a heavy load

Global Monitor

Global Monitor (January 2008) 

Dominion applies for new Virginia reactor / ABB commissions world's largest SVC / Google Earth adds air quality data / Alstom supplies integrated solar/CC project in Morocco / DOE updates coal plant database / Dam the Red Sea? / Complying with CWA Section 316

Speaking of Power

Renew Indian Point’s fission license

  Early last month, Governor Eliot Spitzer and Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo—both New York Democrats—asked the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to reject Entergy Nuclear’s application to extend the…

GBR Reports