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INDUSTRIES - Power Plants


Power generating plants with inadequate maintenance programs will invariably be unable to compete in today's very competitive industry. For this reason, power plants are implementing a variety of technologies to reduce the costs of maintenance and to increase plant reliability and efficiency.

Oil analysis can be a very effective tool in determining its condition. Even though the primary focus should be on monitoring for wear, determining the condition of the oil through analysis is still important. By analyzing the oil it is possible to establish the oil's condition and its ability to continue protecting the equipment. An oil analysis program will indicate any changes in viscosity, oxidation and depletion of additives in the oil. It will also show if any contaminants are present.

Lubricating oil contamination is a major problem and if not controlled can lead to catastrophic failures of power plant equipment. Some of the contaminants in lubricating oils include gases, liquids such as water, and solid particulates. Gases decrease viscosity and promote foaming that in turn reduces the lubricating properties of the oil

To minimize undesirable properties in the oil, additives are often used. Antioxidant additives are added to increase the life and storage of oils, while antifoam additives help to reduce foaming. Other additives include: anti-wear, extreme pressure, pour point depressants, corrosion and rust inhibitors, de-mulsifiers, detergents and dispersants.

Varnish Potential Analysis

Varnish is an insoluble film that coats the internal components of machinery lubrication systems. The specific lubricant degradation byproducts associated with varnish formation remain elusive so is the need for the special test for finding the VPI ( Varnish Potential Index).

Equipment critical to power plants are:
  • Gas Turbines
  • Steam Turbines
  • EHC Systems Fluids
  • Generators
  • Cooling Tower Gearboxes
  • Boiler Feed Pumps
  • Auxiliary Power Plant Equipment

Typical Oil Analysis Tests For Power Plants

  • Water
  • Chemistry such as TAN, Oxidation, Nitration and Sulfation
  • Viscosity
  • Contamination/Particle Count
  • Wear such as concentration of wear metals
  • Particle shape, size, Composition and morphology
  • MPC patch Test

Possible Solutions

  • MiniLab 23
  • MiniLab 33
  • MiniLab 53
  • MiniLab 153
  • T2FM

Possible Solutions