Sliding Pressure Operations

November 16, 2010

“Sliding Pressure” simply mans reducing boiler pressure in proportion to a reduction of MW generation. When “Power Wheeling” is fully effective, clearly those electrical generating units with the lowest cost will operate the most. Overall operating costs, efficiency, and/or “”eat rate”” as well as “turn down ratio” for each turbine-generator unit will be critical.

The “turn down ratio” is the ratio of maximum to minimum load. Those with high ratios are preferred because they can take a big swing from maximum load in the day to minimum load at night. Without coming off line.

“Sliding Pressure” for most sub-critical boilers is usually required to obtain the lowest minimum load a unit can achieve continuously and the maximum efficiency at that minimum load.

For fluid drive applications, a reduction of boiler pressure corresponds to a reduction of the output shaft speed/BFP shaft speed, resulting in increased heat, usually more than the amount for which the unit was designed, and often, high amplitude vibration.

TRI Transmission & Bearing Corp. has proven solutions in hand for fully evaluating and resolving these issues for all sizes and types of fluid drives, in BFP or other applications.

For certain units, during sliding pressure operation, new control valve opening patterns occur, leading to different “nozzle block” forces on the turbine rotors. TRI evaluates the changing rotor vibration conditions which result and makes recommendations, including the benefits provided by TRI Align-A-Pad ® bearings and other TRI products for reducing rotor vibration and bearing maintenance.

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