The field validation and launch unit performance testing of a new high efficiency steam turbine design is described. The HEAT™ (High Efficiency Advanced Technology) steam turbine utilizes a new line of high efficiency steam path components developed by the author’s company [1], [2]. The extensive field test program, executed at the customer’s plant, included all major aspects of steam turbine operation and performance. Data was gathered continuously using multiple automated systems. Careful indexing of this data provided a multi-faceted view of operating phenomena during the test period. Overall machine performance was tested using ASME PTC 6.2 protocol. HP and IP individual section thermodynamic performance was quantified with a series of enthalpy drop tests. In addition, all leakage flows were measured to confirm end seal performance. HP section pressure ratio tests and internal leakage blowdown tests were done to determine the HP steam path aerodynamic characteristics. Various pressure measurements were used to quantify LP bucket aerodynamics and overall LP hood/diffuser performance. Validation testing of thermal-mechanical transient behavior of major components during all normal operating modes was achieved using lasers, thermocouples and strain gauges. In addition, thermal imaging was used to increase understanding of these transients. The validation instrumentation had an additional benefit to this customer, as it assisted the site team to successfully commission this A14 code type turbine, which achieved world-class efficiency.

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