Maximise Turbine and compressor availability

Society’s drive towards optimising efficiency is more prevalent than ever before. The turbomachinery sector is no exception with coal-fired power plants being replaced with higher efficiency, lower-emission combined-cycle gas and turbine power plants. Yet with new methods of power generation and equipment design comes the need for new maintenance regimes to optimise efficiency and prevent varnish and deposit formation which, in turn, causes costly unplanned downtime.

With as many as 33% of F-class turbine fleets showing some signs of oil varnishing, equipment manufacturers have published increasingly stringent lubricant specifications and monitoring practices to combat this.

Understanding the rate at which turbine oils degrade as well as the contributing factors to turbine varnish formation, allows turbine users to adopt end-to-end solutions and preventative maintenance strategies.

Learn about the most effective maintenance strategy to reduce unplanned downtime and prevent vanish formation.

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  • How are by-products formed and how will this effect the rate turbine oil degrades?

    Understanding how varnishes are formed allows turbomachinery operators to make an informed choice of the best maintenance regime for their equipment.

    High variable temperatures, oxidation rates, thermal degradation and generation of contaminants can increase the total acid number, which over time develops into insoluble polar compounds that then creates varnish deposits.

    This is something that operators need to consider when choosing turbine oil for their machinery, as oil can provide increased resistance to the formation of varnish deposits.

  • Do current lubricant specifications address the formation of varnish deposits?

    The evolving design and operations of turbomachinery means that oils are more susceptible to stress and varnish formation.

    Ever-changing test procedures from equipment manufacturers are increasingly stringent.

    However current test procedures predominantly focus on turbine oil oxidation resistance, but don’t always address the oil’s propensity to form varnish, meaning that some turbine oils will not provide adequate protection against deposits.

  • Futureproofing your equipment

    As customers’ requirements get more complex, products have to evolve and develop accordingly to offer optimum levels of protection and maximise performance.

    To prevent damage, turbomachinery operators need to use a turbine oil designed to extend oil life, reduce varnish and protect components.

    Expert services such as Shell LubeChat and LubeAnalyst also allow operators to understand the condition of their oil and equipment, to put in place measures that can boost efficiency.





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