Operational Experience With the World’s First Offshore Turboexpanders With Magnetic Bearings FREE

[+] Author Affiliations
Harald Underbakke

Statoil, Stavanger, Norway

Paper No. 96-GT-218, pp. V005T14A021; 8 pages
  • ASME 1996 International Gas Turbine and Aeroengine Congress and Exhibition
  • Volume 5: Manufacturing Materials and Metallurgy; Ceramics; Structures and Dynamics; Controls, Diagnostics and Instrumentation; Education; General
  • Birmingham, UK, June 10–13, 1996
  • Conference Sponsors: International Gas Turbine Institute
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-7876-7
  • Copyright © 1996 by ASME


The first offshore turboexpanders with magnetic bearings have now been in operation on the Sleipner A platform in the North Sea since October 1993.

Four machines are installed, each at 3.3 MW, running at 16,500 RPM for natural gas dew point control.

During the commissioning phase and the first year of operation a number of problems were discovered, mainly due to the application of magnetic bearings in a new environment, and some unexpected bearing / process interaction phenomenon.

To solve the problems it was necessary to do modifications to electrical systems, mechanical parts, operational procedures and buffer gas systems.

After a 1.5 year period of modifications, all 4 machines are now running with 99 % availability.

Copyright © 1996 by ASME
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