POWER [April, 15 2006]

Cover Stories

A permanent solution to generator vibration problems

Remember the slogan, "Never trust anyone over thirty?" Chances are you've joined the ranks of the over-thirty generation and are dealing with your own personal "maintenance" issues—not unlike the fleet…

Air heater leakage: Worse than you think

Rotary regenerative air heaters capture and recycle about 60% of the heat energy exiting the boiler—energy that would otherwise go up the stack. For a 500-MW coal-fired plant, the recycled…

Balancing people, plants, and practices

An essential ingredient in the success of any business endeavor is thorough planning. We've all heard the axiom "proper prior planning prevents poor performance" or a variation on that theme.…

Brain surgery breathes new life into aging plants

Age is wreaking havoc on the U.S. generation industry, especially the coal-fired sector. Industry conferences are replete with hand-wringing over the "brain drain," the lack of skilled personnel, the meager…

Keeping condensers clean

There's a relatively easy way to make a steam plant more efficient and reliable: keep the tubes of its condenser(s) clean. According to George Saxon, Jr., VP of international sales…

Steam turbine upgrading: Low-hanging fruit

In 1500, Leonardo Da Vinci drew sketches of a device that rotated when hot air going up a chimney passed through a set of fan-like blades. Leonardo called his invention…

Features

Designing steam cycles to avoid corrosion

U.S. power producers and owners of industrial steam systems each spend about $15.4 billion annually to combat corrosion in their plants. Scale and deposits are thought to be responsible for…

Marmy stops dreaming

Steve Elonka began chronicling the exploits of Marmaduke Surfaceblow—a six-foot-four, steel brush-mustached marine engineer with a foghorn voice—in the pages of POWER in 1948. That was the year that Marmy raised the wooden mast of the SS Asia Sun with the aid of two cobras and a case of Sandpaper Gin. This classic episode, written in the late 1960s, shows that even minor consequences of a steam turbine overhaul can cause problems. And as Marmaduke shows, solving any problem requires equal parts judgment, logic, and experience. Enjoy.

Why new U.S. supercritical units should consider T/P92 piping

T/P92 is being heralded as a superior and lower-cost alternative to T/P91 for new power plants with pressures above 3,600 psi and temperatures above 1,100F—such as the supercritical and ultra-supercritical…

Departments

Commentary

Economic dispatch done best when done locally

Both the states and the federal government are looking at who should decide which power plants are used at any given moment to meet demand. In question is which approach…

New Products

Legal & Regulatory

Facilitate plant siting by relaxing ratemaking constraints

The U.S. needs new generating capacity in coming decades to meet growing electricity demand. The increasing scarcity of land within utility load centers, combined with environmental opposition to the siting…

Focus on O&M

How important is IR detector resolution?

Stretching meager maintenance dollars is a way of life for most maintenance staff. In past years, the cost of an infrared (IR) camera usually came down to a choice between…

SWAT team helps shorten forced outage

Calpine Corp.'s South Point Energy Center in Mohave County, Ariz. (Figure 1) is a 520-MW natural gas-fired, combined-cycle facility with two Siemens Westinghouse 501FD gas turbines and one steam turbine-generator…

Wireless vibration monitoring shows benefits

The 1,768-MW Baldwin Energy Complex in Illinois was the site of a joint-venture pilot project to demonstrate a wireless vibration-monitoring system for a coal pulverizer. The partners in the project…

Global Monitor

Big bucks for carbon sequestration

The California Energy Commission (CEC) recently awarded about $14 million for carbon sequestration projects to be overseen by the West Coast Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership. Westcarb, as the partnership is…

Giant GE GT goes global  

In late February, the largest gas turbine ever manufactured by GE Energy at its Belfort plant in France began a 30-day journey by land and sea that will take it…

Monster moisture separators

Thermal Engineering International (TEI) (USA) Inc. (Santa Fe Springs, Calif.)—a subsidiary of Babcock Power Inc. (Danvers, Mass.)—recently shipped two of the largest pressure vessels in the company's 90-year history. The…

Siemens units keep pace

Earlier this February, Siemens Power Generation's (SPG's) factory in Berlin delivered its 500th gas turbine. The SGT5-4000F (Figure 2), formerly called the V94.3A, is nominally rated at 270 MW and…

Speaking of Power

Facilitate plant siting by relaxing ratemaking constraints

The U.S. needs new generating capacity in coming decades to meet growing electricity demand. The increasing scarcity of land within utility load centers, combined with environmental opposition to the siting…

Howdy . . . and welcome!

During the 17 years I've lived in Texas, I don't know that I've actually heard anyone say, "Howdy!" but it seemed like the most appropriate word to associate POWER with…

Western coal rush

  —Dr. Robert Peltier, PE Editor-in-Chief The hot hand in coal-fired power plant development is undoubtedly held by Nevada. In a departure from Sin City's latest marketing slogan, "What happens…

GBR Reports