Gas Turbine HANDBOOK
Pages : 451
Size : 14 MB
Looking back into 19th Century history, machines strikingly simi-
lar to today’s microturbine were being developed. True they were large,
bulky machines, but they had the same characteristics. For example, they
had centrifugal compressors & turbines, single combustors and, in some
cases, a heat exchanger that captured exhaust gases to heat the compressor
discharge air before it entered the combustor (a recuperator or regenera-
tor). Each was a stand-alone component coupled together by shafts, hubs,
and ducting. But thermodynamically these machines are identical.
Prior to the introduction of microturbines the only drivers avail-
able in the 600 and under horsepower range were reciprocating engines.
These reciprocating engines are large, they vibrate, they are noisy, they
are fuel specifi c, and they require frequent maintenance. By comparison
the microturbine is small, quiet, relatively vibration and maintenance free,
and tolerant of a wide range of fuels.
The microturbine innovators had the vision to see the potential
in a very small gas turbine. A vision similar to Frank Whittle’s and Hans
Pabst von Ohain’s vision of utilizing a gas turbine for jet power. They
were able to look at engine turbocharger components and visualize how
the addition of a combustor could turn them into a gas turbine. Further,
they could visualize how a recuperator, wrapped around the combustor
could enhance performance, reduce emissions, and minimize the package
footprint. To produce suffi cient power to make these units saleable they
had to operate at high temperatures and very high speeds.
Advances in bearing designs and air bearings, high temperature
metallurgy, and fast computer controls had their roots in the aviation
industry. Like the turbocharger components, these advances were already
available. And so a new application of an old technology was born.
Chapter 11 – Microturbines should be a benefi t to plant
managers, engineers, and operators who are either considering installing
microturbines or who already have microturbines installed and are looking
for help operating & maintaining them.
Beside the new chapter on microturbines, Chapter 10 – Acoustics
has also been updated with the assistance of Mr. Eldon Ray, P.E. While the
changes from the 2nd Edition may be subtle, I believe this rewrite makes
this chapter easier to read and acoustics easier to understand.
In addition Chapter 17 – Case History #4 has been added to
highlight the application of the microturbine; Chapter 18 – The Gas
Turbine Future has been rewritten to identify recent trends in gas turbine
progress and reemphasize the advances toward hydrogen fuels.
Finally Appendix A-1 has been updated with Diesel and Gas
Turbine Worldwide 2005 Gas Turbine Manufacturers (Names, Addresses,
Phone Numbers) and the addition of Appendix A-2 Microturbine Manu-
facturers. Also additional information has been added to Appendix D
– Technical Societies and D-2 Technical Articles as they relate to microtur-