Benefits of Model Based Analysis

GPAL On line systems are excellent at determining faults developing in components and equipment such as process compressor and gas turbines in a very non-intrusive manner. They can also give indications of loss in power, increase heat rate quite accurately. Proper intervention can maintain availability and reduce maintenance costs, which are important, however to achieve the maximum benefit of performance monitoring off line systems are required to generate new information/knowledge. Customer can now use this new found/knowledge to maximum production, which will increase revenue or optimize fuel/energy consumption, which will reduce operation costs and optimize maintenance Such
maintenance optimization will contribute to reduced maintenance cost hence still further reducing operating costs.

Maximizing production maximizes asset utilization and hence maximizes revenue (i.e. getting more bang for your capital expenditure) while reduction in fuel/energy, maintenance and costs reduces operating costs, hence help reduce life cycle cost. These factors will maximum profits. Although manufactures of equipment such as gas turbines and compressors offer maintenance contracts to guarantee availability but they are seldom able to offer such off line services covering all aspects of the process and where the power of performance monitoring really lies. Additionally rule based systems (such as AI) are unlikely to provide such benefits because the physics of such process have to be modeled quite accurately.

The figures 1 and 2 below summaries the process of advanced performance monitoring where online information (i.e. fault indices) are used by the offline system to generate new knowledge to maximize profit.

Fig1 Online performance monitoring of different components and equipment generates fault indices
Fig2 Offline analysis of processes use fault indices to maximum profit

These off line systems are in fact virtual systems and they go further than simulators where the modeling is much more rigorous. Examples can be found in where gas turbine operation can be studies to achieve maximum profit. Another example is GPAL GasComp virtual gas compression system where a process can be optimized for minimum fuel/energy consumption or realize maximum production (maximum asset utilization) if required. GPAL COOPS system gives an example of minimizing fuel usage of a CHP plant. A common gas turbine performance deterioration is compressor fouling and GPAL XWash system shows how to optimize engine wash to minimize lost revenue.

These virtual systems are also useful in carbon trading where predicted production and ambient conditions, for example, can be entered and the simulation run to predict the amount of CO2produced quite accurately, particularly when we are able to include the effects of performance deterioration. For example GPAL gas turbine simulators illustrates this elegantly where all gas turbine emissions are described in detail.. Another industry that can benefit from such technology is the insurance market where effective monitoring systems are used to predict imminent failure and intervening thus reducing insurance claims.

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