Ansaldo Energia’s GT36 H-Class gas turbine has successfully completed the first phase of its validation programme at the Birr Test Power Plant in Switzerland. Birr is a full scale simple cycle plant, finished in 2016, that can be used for the operation and validation of a fully instrumented engine under real power plant conditions, and feed its output to the grid.
The tests fully confirm the high performance, low emissions over the entire load range, and resulting very wide operational window of this engine.
The test programme included stress testing of the two stages of the sequential combustion system, part and full load mapping, transient operation and performance testing. The validation engine is equipped with more than 3000 measurement points, including a telemetry system which transfers more than 500 measurements from the rotating parts.
The GT36’s combustion system has been under test since 2013 as a single component in a combustor test rig, at full size and under full massflow, at the DLR (the German Aerospace Center) in Cologne.
The test results reported for the GT36-S6 (60Hz rating) confirmed power output above 340 MW at 41% efficiency. In combined cycle this could correspond to a rating of over 500 MW at 61.3% net efficiency in ISO conditions and 720 MW at 61.5% efficiency for the GT36-S5 (the 50Hz scaled version).
The characteristics of the GT36 are considered to be a good fit with power market requirements today, where combined cycle plants need to offer high efficiency coupled with good load following flexibility.