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How to make your gas turbine ‘eco-friendly’

15/12/2021

Let’s face it: if we’re aiming for eco-friendly power solutions, gas turbines are not anyone’s first choice. They are generally powered by fossil fuels and emit considerable volumes of greenhouse gases. 
 
However, we must accept that we are currently reliant on gas turbines in a variety of situations. This simply won’t change overnight, so it’s essential to do everything in our power to reduce their environmental impact as much as possible. 
 
Fortunately, there are simple steps you can take to improve your gas turbine compressor’s efficiency while reducing the fossil fuel used and the gases emitted. That’s not only good news for the planet but also for your bottom line. 
 

What makes gas turbines bad for the environment? 

Whenever fossil fuels are burnt they release greenhouse gases including CO2. These gases trap heat in the Earth’s atmosphere (hence the term ‘greenhouse’), contributing to global warming and climate change. By their nature, gas turbines burn gas to generate energy, unavoidably releasing greenhouse gases.  
 
The world’s community is becoming more and more aware of our collective contribution to global warming. It’s increasingly important to do everything we can to minimise our greenhouse gas emissions
 

Cleaner is greener

climate change

So, what if you have to use a gas turbine? Some industries are simply reliant on gas turbine technology or can’t afford to change, but that’s not an excuse to do nothing about emissions. Although there’s no such thing as an eco-friendly gas turbine, even older model compressors can be improved when it comes to efficiency and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. 
 
By implementing a regular cleaning schedule, you will remove and prevent the build-up of foulants on the inner surfaces of the turbine’s compressor. This is turn maintains aerodynamic flow and facilitates more complete fuel combustion. Through cleaning you will: 

Rochem case study: reducing carbon emissions 

To show the kind of fuel and CO2 savings that can be made through cleaning, the following data was gathered from General Electric frame gas turbine operating at an offshore installation.
 
The gas turbine compressor was retrofitted with Rochem FYREWASH® nozzles and an on-line wash was carried out with Rochem FYREWASH® F3 cleaning chemical.
 
Data was gathered before and after the wash and indicates a post-wash fuel saving of 65 m³/hr with a load increase of 300 kW.
 
Looking at greenhouse gas emissions, based on an annual operating time of 358 hours, the potential CO2 saving is 1394 tonnes per year with regular compressor washing. 

 

Before wash Post wash
Ambient air temperature: °C 2.8 3.1
Barometric pressure: mBar 994 995
Gas turbine load: MW 17.7 18
Fuel gas flow rate: NM³/hr 6053 5988

 

Calculated fuel saving per year: tonnes 522.2
Calculated CO2 saving per year: tonnes 1394

 

Profit and the environment 

Realistically, our customers have historically been more interested in saving money and boosting efficiency than reducing their greenhouse gas emissions. However, the industry is becoming more self-conscious and public opinion is forcing action when it comes to the latter. Targets are being set and expectations raised. 

The great news is that with the right technology and products, you can play your part in reducing harmful emissions while also saving money for your business at the same time. A cleaner gas turbine compressor is more reliable, more efficient and less polluting than the alternative, which is great news for everyone.

Get in touch

If you’re interested in reducing the environmental impact and boosting the efficiency of your gas turbine compressor, get in touch. Our team of industry experts are on hand to answer all your questions and discuss how we can help with our range of market leading technology and cleaning chemicals. 

 

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