This paper discusses experiences and recommendations of six practicing thermal performance engineers with regards improving and maintaining the thermal efficiency of power plants. It discusses the authors’ perceived decline over the past decade for qualified staff, and capital projects involving efficiency improvements, instrumentation and testing/monitoring projects. Such observations extend to North America and Western Europe. This paper attempts to coalesce years of observations and hands-on experience in the field into summaries useful for prudent action. It also presents several recommendations aimed at improving the consciousness towards performance engineering, which has the potential of substantially reducing emissions per electrical output, and increasing the mostly forgotten thermal efficiencies of power plants (heat rate).

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