Turbine Inspection and Alignment Using Laser Trackers

API MarketingNews

Gas and steam turbine measurement applications are primarily focused on bore alignments. Typically, a multi-station turbine bore inspection can be performed using a laser tracker inside one day. From the initial setup to final data reporting, the inspection process is proven to produce repeatable, accurate measurement results.

API Services has streamlined the entire turbine inspection process, from data acquisition to data analysis, providing same day inspection and results where users can make informative decisions about next steps. “Utilizing the API Radian Laser Tracker can save 30-35% in schedule time when compared to conventional methods of alignment using manual measurements and calculations that introduce risk for human error,” says Paul Nicholas, API’s Key Accounts Manager. “For all projects, this will positively impact critical path time and increase savings.”

The turbine bore inspection process perfectly complements the capabilities of a laser tracker to record and analyze large volume measurement data. Any horizontal and vertical measurement deviations, from turbine centerline, are easily visible via custom designed charts and graphs. “Utilizing 3D measurement with the Radian also provides savings by reducing manpower needed to accomplish the surveys,” Paul Nicholas adds. “In most cases, conventional methods of alignment require two technicians to accomplish surveys verses one API Service Engineer using the 3D measurement process.”

Turbine inspection services offered by API include Bore Alignment Inspection and Tops-Off Multi Station Inspection which can include Bearings, Couplings, Oil Pump, Oil Bores, Gland Bore, Dummy Rings, Nozzle Chamber and Blade Rings, and Diaphragm. In addition, Coupling Alignment, Thermal Growth Inspection, New Installation and Re-locations can be also be performed.

By utilizing the full capabilities of the Radian laser tracker and specialized software, API can produce a master control plan relevant to the turbine bore centerline, from end to end. The inspection process allows the tracker to be positioned at any location while maintaining and reporting measurement X, Y, and Z data in relation to the turbine centerline at any specified location.

Coupling and shaft inspection is typically based upon the ‘as designed’ catenary curve of the unit with the tracker inspection process collecting shaft measurement data at each bearing and comparing to the original design line.

In addition, API Services has significant experience in performing Squat and Load Checks providing alignment results at both designated turbine temperatures and turbine load conditions.