The first gas turbine burner to be produced by Siemens using Laser Powder Bed Fusion (LPBF) metal Additive Manufacturing has now been in operation for over 8,000 hours, having completed its first full year of active service in an SGT-700 gas turbine at E.ON’s combined cycle power plant in Philippsthal, Germany.
To-date, Siemens stated that the burner has no reported issues.
Siemens began additively manufacturing gas turbine burner by LPBF in 2017 with its intelligent burner manufacturing (IBUMA) programme in Finspång, Sweden. Using AM enabled the company to produce each burner head in one piece, compared to conventional methods requiring thirteen individual parts and eighteen welds.
The redesign of the part for AM also enabled improvements to the functionality of the burner, such as incorporation of the pilot-gas feed into the head instead of the outside fuel pipe. This allows the operating temperature to be kept lower and contributes to a longer operational lifespan. Working side-by-side, Siemens and E.ON became co-creators on this project, realising benefits on both sides of the partnership. Siemens stated that it is accelerating the development of innovative design and manufacturing technologies, while E.ON is benefitting from these innovations at an early stage.
“As an energy service provider, precision and consistency are an absolute requirement for us,” explained Niklas Lange, Project Manager at E.ON Energy Projects. “Additive Manufacturing not only delivers this but in our experience it can even improve performance compared with older models.”
“We like to help drive innovation,” he continued. “When I saw these burners from Siemens in Sweden, I knew we could benefit from using them in a commercial turbine. It’s also important to note that our hands-on collaboration with Siemens has been a key to deliver performance to our customer.” Vladimir Navrotsky, Chief Technology Officer for Siemens Power Generation Services, Distributed Generation, commented, “These early results from the IBUMA burner with E.ON validate our belief that this technology is a game-changer. We appreciate E.ON’s active participation and commitment to driving innovation and look forward to our continued close collaboration.”
Siemens began investing in metal AM in 2008 and has since been developing the technology specifically for power generation. In 2012, it installed its first EOS M280 SLM printer and adapted it for burner repairs. In 2013, the first additively manufactured burner tips and swirlers were installed in commercial gas turbines. In 2016, Siemens acquired UK-based Materials Solutions and in 2017, designed and printed the world’s first gas turbine blades and validate them under operating conditions.
(Source: Metal AM_Vol.4_N°3)