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Rotor Lifecycle Management Program

[+] Author Affiliations
Michal Wrobel, Mark Richter, Rene Zimmermann, Holger Kiewel, Andreas Ullrich

Alstom Power, Baden, Switzerland

Paper No. GT2014-26761, pp. V07AT29A019; 9 pages
  • ASME Turbo Expo 2014: Turbine Technical Conference and Exposition
  • Volume 7A: Structures and Dynamics
  • Düsseldorf, Germany, June 16–20, 2014
  • Conference Sponsors: International Gas Turbine Institute
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4576-9
  • Copyright © 2014 by Alstom Technologie AG


Minimizing the maintenance costs has become an ever growing topic in the power generation industry. Consequently, OEM’s constantly increase their efforts to exploit the full lifetime potential of capital intensive components, as for instance gas turbine rotors. More than ever, it is essential to have a closed loop from the design knowledge to solid facts about the actual condition of a gas turbine rotor in the field, in order to optimize the utilization and therefore to reduce total lifecycle costs.

During initial design an iterative component design process is applied, comprising of analytical calculations and component and engine tests, to design a reliable, robust and maintenance friendly component. Individual component risk profiles (i.e. failure probability and consequences) have to be taken into account during the design phase to cover uncertainties regarding the operating regime, operating conditions and environment, resulting in the minimum expected lifetime.

The lifetime of gas turbine components is limited and primarily depends on factors like the operating regime, dictating the mechanical and thermal loads, actual material properties, environmental conditions and the level of maintenance. Those parameters have a scatter and also interact with each other. As a consequence the progress of component degradation varies and the individual component lifetime isn’t known in detail at the time of the design.

The purpose of a Rotor Lifecycle Management Program is to detect individual component degradation early in the lifecycle, in order to exploit the maximum rotor lifetime while ensuring safe operation.

Periodic monitoring and condition assessment of the individual rotor is the first step, performed during standard type C inspections and comprising of visual inspection, dimensional and advanced non-destructive measurements. Typically the monitoring schedule is based on the operating regime and the operating history of the specific rotor.

The combination of the monitoring results with validated analytical design models, extensive material data and the overall gas turbine rotor fleet experience of the OEM, allows proper planning of lifetime extension measures, such as repair and reconditioning activities. Specific repair solutions for both on-site and shop applications have been developed.

A rotor lifecycle management program is a „living” program. The monitoring scope and schedule as well as the repair solutions portfolio are continuously optimized and adapted as a result of detailed analysis of operating data and inspection results of the whole global fleet.

Copyright © 2014 by Alstom Technologie AG



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