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Working with Iberdrola’s Center for Monitoring, Diagnosis and Simulation (CMDS), EPRI developed GTOP software to fully document a hot section inspection for a 9FA frame combustion turbine. CMDS and EPRI validated application of GTOP Castellon Station and documenting the hundreds of tasks related to machine disassembly, inspection, reassembly, and start-up. With GTOP, Iberdrola was better able to plan, manage, and document this major overhaul. In addition, use of the software created a foundation for Iberdrola to increasingly take direct responsibility for maintaining its own large fleet of advanced gas turbines.
– Dr. José A. Tagle, María Martín, Antonio Caruana, José Miguel BerrioIberdrola
PlantView Automated Training Manager
“Our company continually strives for operational excellence and [Operational Excellence Program] OEP is fundamental to our continued success. This initiative saved the company hundreds of thousands of dollars in development costs due of the creativity, skill, and determination of the people involved, and it has created a legacy that ensures Progress Energy will have future generations of highly skilled operators.”
– Charlie Gates, Progress Energy
Coal Flow Measurement
Luminant hosted a field test program to assess coal distribution to burners at its Martin Lake Power Station. The test program adopted concepts learned from studies conducted at EPRI’s Coal Flow Measurement and Control Laboratory. By employing an advanced coal flow meter, which enables real-time assessment of coal distribution from one mill, the results of the field test program allowed plant personnel to gain insights as to how the system is currently operating and to devise a strategy for improving coal distribution to specific burners.
– Pete Ulvog, Luminant
Field Evaluation of Continuous Mercury Monitors (CMMs)
E.ON U.S. hosted a field evaluation of CMMs at its Trimble County Power Plant to resolve a number of specific technical issues related to sample acquisition, calibration, operation, instrument certification, and reliability. The field evaluations offered the utility first-hand experience with CMM technology. The test results will help enable E.ON to make informed purchase decisions that result in reduced technical and economic risk and ensure cost-effective compliance with the EPA reporting requirements.
– John Moffett, Tom Crutcher, Jeff Slocum, Trent Henderson, Nick PayneE.ON U.S.
Integrated Boiler Tube Failure Reduction/Cycle Chemistry Improvement Program
TNB implemented EPRI’s Integrated Boiler Tube Failure Reduction/Cycle Chemistry Improvement Program (BTFR/CCIP) and produced plant-specific Guidelines for implementation at their plants. Through improvements in the overall boiler operational and maintenance program, TNB has significantly reduced the rate of boiler tube failures to less than 1% of the plant availability loss over the past few years. This has contributed to TNB’s world-class performance in achieving the overall unplanned outage rate of less than 3%.
– Shahrir Abdul Latiff, Tenaga Nasional Berhad, Malaysia
Combustion Turbine Repair and Coating Guidelines
Taiwan Power applied EPRI’s Combustion Turbine Repair and Coating Guidelines to assess the condition and suitable repair approach for their fleet of Siemens V84.2 model combustion turbines. By developing an in-house technical competency on repair processes and their application to the specific design features of the V84.2 hot section, Taiwan Power extended the economic useful life of expensive super alloy gas turbine components and continue to run the components as is over an extended service interval or perform repair/recoating in-house.
– Tsung-Hsiao Wu, Taiwan Power
Crack Growth Analysis
DTE Energy utilized crack growth analysis methods developed by EPRI to demonstrate that crack accumulation in boiler drums at the utility’s St. Clair Power Plant could be addressed through monitoring and inspection rather than costly weld repairs. By utilizing the continuing inspections of the boiler drums, DTE Energy was able to avoid weld repairs estimated at $40K to $50K per drum. The unit was able to return to service without extending the outage time. In addition, future repairs of the welds that often re-crack will be avoided.
– Dr. Richard Lynch, DTE Energy
Quick Silver Emission Monitor (Quick-SEM)
AEP supported development of Quick-SEM, a sorbent trap sampling methodology for measuring mercury in power plant stacks. The Quick-SEM approach became the basis for both the EPA Appendix K method for routine compliance monitoring for mercury as well as the EPA Reference Method 30B for certification of continuous mercury monitors in the Clean Air Mercury Rule (CAMR). “The EPA Method 30B and the sorbent trap sampling methodology have proven to be workable and accurate,” says AEP’s Manojit Sukul. Although CAMR, including the App. K method, has been vacated, EPA is expected to promulgate a new rule in the near future. Industry experts believe that new rule will include some form of mercury monitoring. “For many utilities, the sorbent trap sampling methodology will provide an alternate low-capital-cost approach, as compared to the installation of continuous mercury monitors.”
– Manojit Sukul, AEP
Intelligent Sootblowing (ISB)
A demonstration of ISB technology at NRG Energy’s W.A. Parish Plant, conducted as part of an EPRI-sponsored project, provided a unique opportunity to identify and quantify all of the technology’s benefits. Total plant-wide annual savings attributable to ISB amounted to more than $15 million. These savings resulted from extended tube life, improved boiler efficiency, and reduced O&M costs. Numerous other benefits were documented qualitatively. The analysis concluded that a return on investment of less than a year can be expected in deploying ISB technology.
– Robert Osco, NRG Energy
Mercury Control Technology
Using EPRI information and data from other test sites, Xcel Energy selected the mercury controls that held most promise at their power plants for cost-effectively meeting emission limits while preserving ash sales. To evaluate their performance at full scale, they conducted demonstrations at Harrington and Tolk Stations. These demonstrations evaluated the performance of sorbent injection and boiler bromide addition (marketed as KNXTM by Alstom) with and without activated carbon injection. “Results of these tests will help Xcel Energy compare the mercury removal effectiveness of several sorbents and KNXTM to determine the best approach for reaching 70% mercury removal while still maintaining fly ash sales.”
– Ron Dutton, Xcel Energy
Geologic Storage of Carbon Dioxide
Southern Company led this first-of-its-kind pilot demonstration to explore the potential for geologic storage of CO2. The project, was managed by EPRI, the Southern States Energy Board, and Advanced Resources International. The project injected CO2 into a saline reservoir near Mississippi Power’s Victor J. Daniel Plant in order to demonstrate the technology for permanent underground sequestration of CO2. “These tests have already helped to validate and refine the effectiveness of CO2 sequestration in geologic formations and have demonstrated the effectiveness of monitoring technologies to measure CO2 movement through a formation.”
– Keith Harrison, Richard EspositoSouthern Company
Plant Managers Forum
As part if its O&M Excellence (OMX) Initiative, EPRI conducted series of Plant Manager Workshops to bring together utility plant managers. The goal of this forum is to utilize the group’s shared wisdom and experience in order to formulate actionable solutions for improving plant performance. In August 2007, the first in the planned series of workshops provided a unique opportunity for 20 utility plant managers from 12 utilities to meet together to share experiences and best practices related to operations and maintenance (O&M). “I’ve attended a number of utility conferences over the past 25 years, and I must say the EPRI Plant Managers Workshop provided the most practical approach to how business is conducted at a power plant.”
– Frank Wszelaki, DTE Energy
Valve Packing Demonstration Unit (VPDU)
Hands-on training with the VPDU ensured that ESB Power Generation plant personnel employ proper packing assembly and loading techniques in the field. Proper practices, in turn, contribute to improved plant safety, operability, and availability. In addition, VPDU training can aid plant engineers in working with valve packing suppliers to select the best products for each application, update plant maintenance procedures to reflect the latest knowledge, and assess the root cause of leaks from valve packing.
– Richard Sheehan, David Willis, Pat FogartyESB Electricity Supply Board of Ireland
Fossil Maintenance Application Center Guides
FirstEnergy initiated a program that requires newly hired maintenance mechanics who lack prior experience with coal generating station equipment to self-train using the FMAC guides. By using these guides, new hires can train themselves at their own pace on some of the operation and maintenance processes and procedures specific to power plant equipment and operations. Using the FMAC guides as a training tool helps newly hired employees learn a great deal about power plant operations in a relatively short period of time.
New Brunswick Power Generation incorporated EPRI’s CHECUPweb 1.1 software into their flow-accelerated corrosion program during scheduled outages in 2007 to calculate the wall loss of single-phase piping segments and components since plant startup. Application of the software enabled them to compile a clear, prioritized inspection sample. It is estimated that at least two in-service failures in heater drains were avoided on each of the two units at NBPG’s Dalhousie Plant. A conservative estimate of the value of lost revenue that was avoided based on today’s fuel prices is $900,000.