Gas Turbine Oil: How well are you managing your expectations?
There are many expectations surrounding Gas turbine Oil; among them is the anticipation of the longstanding durability of the turbine oil. Turbine oil suppliers are quick to offer their estimates in gas turbine applications that run from 5 to 15 years, but few.
It can be assumed, without a doubt, that properly tested and maintained, higher quality turbine oils will offer longer life than poorly tested and maintained, lower-quality products. One can also delineate new turbine oil performance characteristics that will promote longer, trouble-free service.
When selecting a turbine oil for gas and steam turbines, oil supplier services and commitment to the customer should be assessed as part of the selection process.
For most large gas turbine frame units, elevated operating temperature is among the major cause of premature turbine oil failure. It is this drive for higher turbine efficiencies and firing temperatures in the gas turbines that have been the primary motivation for the trend toward more thermally robust turbine oils. Today’s large frame units function with bearing temperatures between 160ºF to 250ºF (71ºC to 121ºC).
What’s more, even the next-generation frame units have reportedly been said to operate at even higher temperatures. In fact, gas turbine OEMs have increased their suggested limits on Rotation Pressure Vessel Oxidation Test (RPVOT) - ASTM D2272 and Turbine Oil Oxidation Stability (TOST) performance to meet these elevated operating temperatures.
With introducing new-generation gas turbines into the utility market, changes in operating cycles are also leading to new lubrication hurdles. Higher bearing temperatures and cyclic operation lead to fouling of system hydraulics that delayed equipment start-up.
The need then was to develop properly planned premium Performance Industrial Anti-Wear Type Steam and Gas Turbine Oil to handle expectations and remediate this problem and extend gas turbine oil drain intervals.
GST Advantage EP is among the few turbine oils that can manage these expectations. Its anti-wear additive system forms a protective chemical film on loaded gear tooth surfaces to help reduce wear and scuffing. Its premium base oils and inhibitor system provide outstanding long-term oxidation stability to resist oil breakdown. Besides resisting the formation of harmful deposits in high temperature bearings and other hot areas of the turbine, its rust inhibitor system protects system components against corrosion.
To add to this, its non-silicon foam inhibitor allows rapid release of entrained air while minimizing foam formation to enable the reliable operation of sensitive hydraulic control devices. The multipurpose nature of the formulation allows it to be used in a wide range of industrial applications, potentially simplifying oil inventories and reducing the possibility of using the wrong lubricant.
In short, proper initial selection of turbine oil and continued conditioned-based maintenance should help to manage expectations and set the stage for years of trouble-free service.
To learn more about GST Advantage EP, click here.