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Gas Turbine Engine Health Management: Past, Present and Future Trends

[+] Author Affiliations
Allan J. Volponi

Pratt & Whitney, East Hartford, CT

Paper No. GT2013-96026, pp. V008T46A001; 25 pages
  • ASME Turbo Expo 2013: Turbine Technical Conference and Exposition
  • Volume 8: Supercritical CO2 Power Cycles; Wind Energy; Honors and Awards
  • San Antonio, Texas, USA, June 3–7, 2013
  • Conference Sponsors: International Gas Turbine Institute
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5529-4
  • Copyright © 2013 by ASME


Engine diagnostic practices are as old as the gas turbine itself. Monitoring and analysis methods have progressed in sophistication over the past 6 decades as the gas turbine evolved in form and complexity. While much of what will be presented here may equally apply to both stationary power plants and aero-engines, the emphasis will be on aero propulsion.

Beginning with primarily empirical methods centering around monitoring the mechanical integrity of the machine, the evolution of engine diagnostics has benefited from advances in sensing, electronic monitoring devices, increased fidelity in engine modeling and analytical methods. The primary motivation in this development is, not surprisingly, cost. The ever increasing cost of fuel, engine prices, spare parts, maintenance and overhaul, all contribute to the cost of an engine over its entire life cycle. Diagnostics can be viewed as a means to mitigate risk in decisions that impact operational integrity. This can have a profound impact on safety, such as In-Flight Shut Downs (IFSD) for aero applications, (outages for land based applications) and economic impact caused by Unscheduled Engine Removals (UERs), part life, maintenance and overhaul and the overall logistics of maintaining an aircraft fleet or power generation plants.

This paper will review some of the methods used in the preceding decades to address these issues, their evolution to current practices and some future trends. While several different monitoring and diagnostic systems will be addressed, the emphasis in this paper will be centered on those dealing with the aero-thermodynamic performance of the engine.

Copyright © 2013 by ASME
Topics: Gas turbines



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