A program is being performed under the sponsorship of the United States Department of Energy, Office of Industrial Technologies, to improve the performance of stationary gas turbines in cogeneration through the selective replacement of metallic hot section components with ceramic parts. The program focuses on design, fabrication, and testing of ceramic components, generating a materials properties data base, and applying life prediction and nondestructive evaluation (NDE). The development program is being performed by a team led by Solar Turbines Incorporated, and which includes suppliers of ceramic components, U.S. research laboratories, and an industrial cogeneration end user. The Solar Centaur 50S engine was selected for the development program. The program goals included an increase in the turbine rotor inlet temperature (TRIT) from 1010°C (1850°F) to 1121°C (2050°F), accompanied by increases in thermal efficiency and output power. The performance improvements are attributable to the increase in TRIT and the reduction in cooling air requirements for the ceramic parts. The ceramic liners are also expected to lower the emissions of NOx and CO. Under the program uncooled ceramic blades and nozzles have been inserted for currently cooled metal components in the first stage of the gas producer turbine. The louvre-cooled metal combustor liners have been replaced with uncooled continuous-fiber reinforced ceramic composite (CFCC) liners. Modifications have been made to the engine hot section to accommodate the ceramic parts. To date, all first generation designs have been completed. Ceramic components have been fabricated, and are being tested in rigs and in the Centaur 50S engine. Field testing at an industrial co-generation site was started in May, 1997. This paper will provide an update of the development work and details of engine testing of ceramic components under the program.
Ceramic Stationary Gas Turbine Development Program—Fifth Annual Summary
Price, J. R., Jimenez, O., Faulder, L., Edwards, B., and Parthasarathy, V. (October 1, 1999). "Ceramic Stationary Gas Turbine Development Program—Fifth Annual Summary." ASME. J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power. October 1999; 121(4): 586–592. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.2818512
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