turbines

We analyze our clients’ bearing, control, and guide system lubricants for natural gas, steam, hydropower, or wind turbines. Turbine oils resist rust and oxidation, and they must separate from water molecules to reduce emulsification. A turbine oil should never reach a boiling temperature, therefore water must separate so the operator can drain it off. Gas turbine lubricants undergo the highest temperatures and therefore require more laboratory attention to insoluble formation in the oil over time. We recommend varnish testing on a semi-annual basis for gas turbines.

The hydraulic control systems, which maintain proper rotor speed and direction, typically have anti-wear properties distinct from turbine lubricating oil.  For all turbines and their hydraulic systems, we always recommend testing the new lubricant when it is first poured into the machine.  Over time we’ll compare that new oil to the used oil samples to quantify whether the lubricant’s integrity is maintained and its anti-oxidant package continues to function as designed.

Routine Testing for Turbines

spectroscopy

Emission Spectroscopy Elemental Oil Analysis

  • MRT uses the Rotrode Spectrometer
  • We closely track changes in unwanted
    particles over time
  • Particle size detection down to 3 microns
viscosity

Viscosity

  • We measure viscosity and viscosity index
  • At 40° C for industrial oils and 100° C for engine oils
  • Quantify severity of oil degradation and contamination
neutralization number

Neutralization Number

  • We measure Total Acid Number (TAN) and Total Base Number (TBN)
  • TAN detects oxidation and degradation and TBN
    detects remaining additives
Karl Fischer

Karl Fischer Water Titration

  • Water is the most common and arguably the most damaging oil contaminant
  • We detect water down to 4 ppm in any state
particle count

Particle Count Analysis (ISO 4406)

  • Laser light counts particles in a sample to the ISO 4406 standard
  • Unacceptable amounts of particles indicate a need for microscopic analysis

Semi-Annual Testing for Turbines

The Routine Test +

microscopic particle

Microscopic Particle Examination

  • Utilized when wear or contamination has been
    detected
  • Fine tunes root cause analysis of the potential
    problem
other lab tests

Other Available Tests

  • Some test packages are a combination of In House and Outsourced
  • We can manage the Outsourced portion and select the proper laboratory

Annual Testing for Turbines

The Semi-Annual Test +

foaming tendency

Oil Foaming Tendency

  • Determine whether the oil foams under various
    scenarios
  • Too much foaming promotes machine wear due to loss of surface contact
copper strip corrosion

Copper Strip Corrosion

  • A test for an oil’s tendency to corrode if certain wear metals are present
demulsibility

Demulsibility

Determine whether the oil can satisfactorily separate from water

other lab tests

Other Available Tests

  • Some test packages are a combination of In House and Outsourced
  • We can manage the Outsourced portion and select the proper laboratory