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Reduction of maintenance overheads in dusty areas

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Hydrocarbon Engineering,


In areas such as the Middle East, protecting gas turbines and compressors from challenging environmental conditions including dust, sand, moisture, salt and other contaminants is vital to performance and reliability.  One of the problems operators face is that each installation has differing environmental conditions, often with seasonal variations, and paper specifications for filtration systems may not portray the reality of how well they will operate once installed. Through experience and expertise, however, filtration solutions can be designed to match site conditions and significant performance to turbine performance and reliability gained, offering rapid return on investment.

Coalescers are often used in filtration systems to prevent moisture from reaching the filter and mixing with sand and dust to create blockages. They usually operate by combining water droplets to make them bigger and heavier, allowing a large proportion to drain away rather than continue in the airstream to the final filters. This prevents small droplets from becoming embedded in the filter ‘pleats’ of higher efficiency filters and causing blockages or impediments to the air flow, which can lead to sudden, unwanted increases in differential pressures.

Traditional coalescing technology uses what is known as a mat, which is a similar media to that employed in dust filtration. The problem is that, in areas with high volumes of dust where moisture is present, these mat coalescers quickly fill up with dust and become blocked.  Once this happens, the air flow can force the coalescer out of place, resulting in a complete bypass of the system. Free moisture is thus allowed to reach the air inlet filter, where, combined with the dust, it can cause sudden blockages and dangerous differential pressure spikes that may lead to complete shutdown. 

The TS1000 coalescer from Parker, however, has been specifically developed for regions such as the Middle East, where high levels of dust and sand are common, and sites often exposed to seasonal and random fog and mist events. 

Unlike traditional mat coalescers, the TS1000 uses 100% synthetic mesh that efficiently removes moisture by catching small liquid droplets and combining them to form larger ones that drop out of the air flow. The unit operates using a two-stage coalescence configuration. The first stage is a moisture separator with coalescing efficiency down to 50 microns. The second stage, a clearcurrent TS1000 coalescer, has 99% coalescing efficiency for droplets down to 10 microns. This panel has limited dust removal capability and, by deliberately not catching sand and dust, it avoids the blockages experienced with traditional mat units, and so significantly reduces maintenance overheads where high levels of both dust and moisture are present. The dry dust which passes through the coalescer can be easily dealt with by the filtration system to stop it reaching turbine internals and causing damage.

To further reduce maintenance time and cost, the TS1000’s synthetic media is easily cleaned in situ with low pressure, cold water, and, unlike traditional coalescers, it does not require replacement when it becomes clogged. Cleaning can be quickly carried out during any downtime or outage. This innovative unit helps maintain turbine output, reduces maintenance and gives excellent service life performance. Its use has been proven to extend the periods between clogging, prolong coalescer life and reduce the amount of monitoring required to avoid unexpected pressure spikes.

Parker has a long experience in the design of complete filtration systems that improve turbine performance in real world installations. Through careful evaluation of prevailing and seasonal conditions, solutions are designed to best meet environmental challenges and operational goals.  Parker can advise on solutions and latest advances in filtration technology for new or existing installations to help operators both protect and get more from their gas turbines.

Parker will be showcasing its filtration solutions at this year’s Middle East Rotating Machinery Technology and Innovation Conference (RoTIC) event in Dubai, from 25 - 27 September. Experts in gas turbine filtration solutions designed for the real world will be available to discuss your application challenges and latest technologies throughout the show.

Read the article online at: https://www.hydrocarbonengineering.com/refining/26092018/reduction-of-maintenance-overheads-in-dusty-areas/

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Downstream news Middle East downstream news