Turbine Overhaul Frequency Time Or Performance Based?.
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How long should a turbine run before it is disassembled for inspection and overhaul? This question is increasingly important in today's environment of reduced maintenance and turnaround costs. Many aspects of the degradation in a steam turbine cannot be detected through performance evaluations. Moreover, periodic inspections with a borescope cannot tell the condition of parts of the turbine that cannot be seen. Two large (60,000 hp and 40,000 hp) ethylene plant turbine drives were recently disassembled for inspection after running over l3 years. During the l3 year run, borescope and visual inspections were done at each plant turnaround (about every five years). No evidence of erosion was seen on these borescope examinations. In addition, all operational evidence indicated that there was no reduction in the performance of the turbines. Online vibration monitoring showed no problems. The inspection however, showed several areas of severe erosion in both turbines. The results of these inspections, justification of funds to do the disassembly, and insights into how both jobs were done during a 21 day turnaround window will be discussed.
Johns, David A.; Bertucci, John T. (1996). Turbine Overhaul Frequency Time Or Performance Based?.. Texas A&M University. Turbomachinery Laboratories. Available electronically from