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The Development of a Model for the Assessment of Bio-Fouling in Gas Turbine System

[+] Author Affiliations
Tosin Onabanjo, Giuseppina Di Lorenzo, Eric Goodger, Pericles Pilidis

Cranfield University, Cranfield, Bedfordshire, UK

Paper No. GT2013-95924, pp. V002T03A023; 14 pages
  • ASME Turbo Expo 2013: Turbine Technical Conference and Exposition
  • Volume 2: Aircraft Engine; Coal, Biomass and Alternative Fuels; Cycle Innovations
  • San Antonio, Texas, USA, June 3–7, 2013
  • Conference Sponsors: International Gas Turbine Institute
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5513-3
  • Copyright © 2013 by ASME


A significant problem encountered in the gas turbine industry with fuel products is the degradation of fuel and fuel systems by microorganisms, which are largely bacteria, embedded in biofilms. These microorganisms cause system fouling and other degradatory effects, extending often to sudden failure of components with cost implications. Current methods of assessment are only post-impact evaluation and do not necessarily quantify the effects of fuel degradation on engine performance and emission. Therefore, effective models that allow predictive condition monitoring are required for engine’s fuel system reliability, especially with readily biodegradable biofuels. The aim of this paper is to introduce the concept of bio-fouling in gas turbines and the development of a bio-mathematical model with potentials to predict the extent and assess the effects of microbial growth in fuel systems. The tool takes into account mass balance stoichiometry equations of major biological processes in fuel bio-fouling. Further development, optimization and integration with existing Cranfield in-house simulation tools will be carried out to assess the overall engine performance and emission characteristics. This new tool is important for engineering design decision, optimization processes and analysis of microbial fuel degradation in gas turbine fuels and fuel systems.

Copyright © 2013 by ASME
Topics: Gas turbines



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