NR1773

NEWS RELEASE                                                                                                                MAY 2013

Power Plant Operators will Spend $122 Billion this Year to Build and Maintain Gas Turbines

Power plants around the world will pay more than $41 billion this year for new gas turbines and just under $81 billion to maintain the existing fleet of more than 23,000 turbines. This is the conclusion reached in the McIlvaine Utility Tracking System published by the McIlvaine Company.

Subject

Metric

New Plants

Existing

Total

Installations

1,000 MW

73

1,176

1,249

Installations

# of units

730

23,520

24,250

Hardware Sales

$ millions

36,000

10,000

46,000

Instrumentation

$ millions

1,440

900

2,340

Consumables

$ millions

1,200

30,000

31,200

Services

$ millions

3,000

40,000

43,000

Total Expenditures

$ millions

41,640

80,900

122,540


There are 730 new units which will be commissioned this year and many more under construction. There is a mix of peaking single cycle units and combine cycle units. The turbine, as furnished by GE, Siemens, Alstom or others, is the main piece of equipment in a single cycle plant. A complete intake air system with filtration, cooling and weather protection is supplied by companies such as Nederman, Donaldson and others. Silencers and exhaust stacks are also required.

In combined cycle plants, there are heat recovery steam generators (HRSGS) boiler feedwater treatment systems and cooling towers. Dry cooling, using big fans, is an alternative which is popular in China due to the arid conditions. In the U.S., dry cooling is being utilized in some of the new projects where there is ample water. The reason is that avoidance of water permitting shortens the construction cycle. Many plants also opt to install big diverter dampers so that the turbines can operate in the single cycle mode.

At one point in time, only the combined cycle units were forced to install selective catalytic reduction (SCR) equipment. Now many of the peaking plants must also implement this NOx control technology. Cooling water blowdown is another environmental problem. Zero liquid discharge systems use evaporation to avoid any water discharges. Increasingly treated municipal wastewater is being used for the raw water.

Air filters and water treatment chemicals are among some of the consumables which must be purchased. Instrumentation is a challenge as today’s fleet of gas turbines must operate at widely fluctuating loads. This is due to the fact that gas is used in tandem with wind and solar. These two sources are unable to deliver a steady power supply. Energy efficiency and emissions are important parameters requiring constant monitoring. Gas turbines are larger versions of airplane engines and, as such, need frequent servicing.

Utility Tracking System provides details on new projects as well as on the existing turbine fleet. For more information on Utility Tracking System, click on: http://home.mcilvainecompany.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=72