Category: Company News

Midstream Delivers 3 Workover Rig Control Packages

TTS MIDSTREAM, a division of TTS Energy Services, recently designed, built, and delivered three workover drilling rig control packages. They worked with an international equipment provider, Highwood Technologies. TTS designed, built, and delivered Remote PLC enclosures, an E-House, ATEX Zone 2 rated operator’s cabin, Field cabling, and Hardware.


From concept to delivery, the three-system project took 9 months to complete. TTS, along with their partners, overcame significant supply chain challenges and delivered quality products to the customer in a timely manner. Each of the 3 systems consisted of a fully customized E-house, designed to be carried on the back of a trailer, as well as an Atex Zone 2 rated operator’s cabin. The system comprised of 1-600 Horsepower VFD, 1-800 Horsepower VFD, 1- Two Generator distribution panel, 1- 6 Section MCC, 1-Softstart Cubicle, and a 1-PLC Cabinet with associated interconnect cabling, plugs, and auxiliaries. The TTS Midstream supplied equipment will be integrated with the rig equipment in the US for commissioning and testing. Once commissioning is complete the systems will be delivered to the Middle East.


“Out of the gate, this project was a real challenge for delivery. With the supply chain always in flux we worked closely with our customer to provide solutions to be able to deliver a quality product to meet tight deadlines. The communication and interface between the multination team has been amazing and I am very proud of our team,” said Matt Shaw, Operations Manager of TTS Midstream. Shaw headed up all engineering, procurement, and manufacturing activities.


TTS Midstream has a long history of providing power and control packages globally as well as offering installation and commissioning services across multiple industries.


For more information on TTS Midstream engineering, manufacturing and service capabilities, or other Midstream or Upstream capabilities, contact Matt Shaw at


About TTS

TTS Energy Services is the corporate parent for Turbine Technology Services, TTS Midstream, and TTS Power. TTS provides engineering and construction expertise, for the energy industry worldwide. The company’s long history and experience providing technical solutions to global energy entities makes it a leader in its field. TTS has successfully managed numerous power and compressor station modernization projects and supplied innovative and unique engineering solutions to challenging problems for their energy customers. Since 1983, their leadership and engineering teams have provided innovative technologies and engineered high-value solutions to over 450 clients worldwide.

TTS Energy Services Restores Power In Nigeria

TTS Power, a division of TTS Energy Services, recently upgraded and restored a 138Mw gas turbine that had been out of service for 11 years. Working with its local partner, Verteville Energy Services, TTS completed a project for the complete controls upgrade, as well as commissioning services, on a Siemens SGT5-2000E (V94.2) gas turbine. TTS provided all engineering, hardware and commissioning services, with Verteville assisting with trained local technicians and support personnel. The units are installed at a newly privatized power plant having over 900Mw of installed capacity.

TTS retrofitted their TMS-1000R control system based on an Allen Bradley ControlLogix Redundant platform with Dynamix vibration monitoring and XM Overspeed protection into the existing control cabinets. For the operator interface, TTS deployed an AVEVA InTouch HMI application.

“The project presented a real challenge as a great deal of existing site knowledge, operating experience, as well as condition of the unit, had deteriorated during the many years of inactivity.” Said Chris Crowell, who as Manager of TTS Controls Design, headed up all engineering activities. Despite the challenge, Chris’ team installed and commissioned a system that is now successfully controlling a gas turbine which is in commercial operation for the first time in many years. A 2nd Siemens unit will be upgraded in 2023.

TTS has a long history of providing power and upgrades in West Africa, and Nigeria in particular, with over 600Mw of gas turbines installed and multiple units, upgraded and serviced.

For more information on TTS Power’s upgrade capabilities or other international power requirements, contact Tony Thornton at


About TTS

TTS Energy Services is the corporate parent for Turbine Technology Services, TTS Midstream, and TTS Power. TTS provides engineering and construction expertise, for the energy industry, worldwide. The company’s long history and experience providing technical solutions to global energy entities makes it a leader in its field. TTS has successfully managed numerous power and compressor station modernization projects and supplied innovative and unique engineering solutions to challenging problems for our energy customers. Since 1983, their leadership and engineering teams have provided innovative technologies and engineered high-value solutions to over 450 clients worldwide.

TTS announces the appointment of David Donnaruma as business development manager for TTS power.

David Donnaruma – Business Development Manger at TTS Energy Services

TTS Energy Services Corp. (TTS), an Orlando-based Energy Services Company, is pleased to announce the appointment of David Donnaruma as Business Development Manager for TTS Power.

A TTS veteran, David joined the company while still completing his Management Information Systems degree at the University of Central Florida (UCF). David became a senior controls engineer in the TTS organization and has an extensive history working on the design, programming, installation, and commission of gas turbine control systems for power and pipeline applications. David completed his MBA at UCF in 2021 and as Business Development Manager, David will help to expand TTS’s Power Generation customer base and will work to develop new product and service offerings for this market. To further sharpen TTS’s offerings, David completed UCF’s Cyber security defense program this year and is working on his Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) cert.

“David’s expertise in automation and controls, experience in the power industry, familiarity with TTS’s capabilities and experience will allow him to apply his MBA skills to developing new customers and markets for TTS Power going forward,” says Pat Begley, Vice President of TTS Power. Well-known in the industry for his technical expertise, product knowledge, and commissioning skills, David brings 15 years of hands-on experience in IT, automation and controls, software development, and system commissioning for gas turbine applications.


About TTS

TTS Energy Services (TTS) is the corporate parent for TTS Power and TTS Midstream. TTS provides engineering and construction expertise, for the energy industry, worldwide. The company’s long history and experience providing technical solutions to global energy entities makes it a leader in its field. TTS has successfully managed numerous power and compressor station modernization projects and supplied innovative and unique engineering solutions to challenging problems for our energy customers.  Since 1983, their leadership and engineering teams have provided innovative technologies and engineered high-value solutions to over 450 clients worldwide.

Ask The TTS Expert: Q & A With Pat Begley

As the VP of TTS Power, Pat Begley knows energy. He started as a mechanical engineer working in the gas turbine industry in 1982 at GE. Over the course of his career, he held several roles starting in engineering and working his way up to management and business administration. In 1997, he started working with TTS taking his experience as a mechanical engineer to a position of business development in the energy industry.

In this “Ask the Expert” Q & A, Pat discusses the Fast Start Market and how the growth of renewables has created a lucrative niche for vintage unit operators to not only provide grid stability but make their units reliable and relevant in today’s evolving energy market.

Why are some generators required to be on the grid quickly?

The requirement for generators to get on the grid quickly has been driven by the advent of renewables. Primarily, the reason is to have backup power available for quick dispatch to support grids that already have a number of renewables operating. In particular, renewables like solar and wind have a tendency to drop off quickly. Due to that, it’s important to have a fast-acting backup energy supply available. Gas turbines are the primary means of doing that.

The increase in renewable energy over the last 20 years has increased the need for this type of support. In the 1990s, renewables represented only about 3.5 gigawatts (GW) on the grid. In 2020 it went to 120 GW of renewables. With the increase in renewable energy comes greater opportunities for instability on the grid. We need more units to pick up the lost load when the sun sets or the wind stops blowing. That’s the opportunity for owners of gas turbines to offer this type of support to the grid.

What are the basic requirements for a gas generator to be considered “Fast Start”?

Generators have to come on within a certain period of time to provide capacity. The requirement to be considered “fast start” varies by market. Regulatory bodies establish standards for all entities within each market.

Is there a set of criteria or a regulating document that sets these standards?

It varies by the market and regulatory body. As a practical matter, that means you have to meet criteria to get your unit synced or fully loaded within a certain amount of time. ERCOT and a number of other regulatory bodies require providers to be on full load within ten minutes. On the other hand, PGM requires that units be online within 15 minutes. Yet, as more renewables join the grid and as technology improves, the criteria for “fast start” and what you can get paid for will change.

What markets in the US are considered “Fast Start”?

Fast Start markets have the greatest amount of renewables and greatest exposure to fluctuation in energy generation. Leading markets right now are ERCOT (Texas), PGM, and Western regions such as CALISO. All of these markets are making efforts to provide opportunities for operators to make their units Fast Start.

Why are some markets in need of Fast Start generation over others?

Markets with a greater percent of renewables, particularly wind, are in need of Fast Start generation. Iowa is the state with the greatest percentage of renewables with about 50% of its energy generated by wind. ERCOT in Texas has the highest amount of total wind generating capacity (20 GW), which is 20% of its total generation capacity. Those markets are considered for Fast Start for these reasons. Additionally, as steam plants and coal plants are phased off the grid, markets that traditionally relied on them will also seek fast start capabilities.

What type of generators are best suited for “Fast Start” duty?

The simple answer is the generators that get loaded and synced the fastest. Traditionally, that is aero engines because they are lighter and start-up faster. Beyond that, simple cycle units lend themselves better to Fast Start duty because unlike combined cycle, they don’t have a heat cycle requirement. Older, simpler units are also viable candidates because they have simple combustion systems and start-up cycles. A lot can be done to make these units Fast Start ready without affecting the maintenance factors on the unit. Next would be DLN machines with simple systems. Combined cycle and complex DLN units are the final options for Fast Start as they don’t offer as much ease in making upgrades.

What can you do to your existing asset to see if it is suitable for “Fast Start” service?

The first step is to understand your market and their requirements around Fast Start Service. Baseline your unit against those current regulations, including times for purge, fire, acceleration, synchronization, load, and total time. It’s important to baseline your unit against the original design, not where it is at currently (if you’ve made upgrades, for example). Once you understand your unit’s suitability, you can determine the modifications it needs and whether it will meet the final criteria. From there, you can offer the unit as a Fast Start option and make revenue.

What types of modifications can be done to gas turbines to compete in the “Fast Start” markets?

Modifications that can be undertaken on any gas turbine are driven by the current start-up and loading capabilities and process for the gas turbine. Essentially, anything you can do to shorten the start-up process is important. Generally, that means any steps you can take to remove delays and start the unit rotating after initiation, accelerate the firing time, eliminate waits or any other form of delays.There are a number of different benefits and costs for each of these upgrades. TTS can assist you in understanding your needs and what steps are most cost effective and beneficial to getting your unit to Fast Start ready.

Which modifications provide the most decrease in startup time?

These modifications are driven by the unit and manufacturer’s requirements, but generally reducing the loading times for synchronization. The next best modification to decrease startup is to look at any purge time you can reduce to what is the minimum required for safe operation. Or you can eliminate the purge time by modifying your gas delivery system to gain a purge credit. This is one of the most beneficial in terms of reducing time, but depending on the steps you need to take, there could be hardware costs to modifying your liquid or gas fuel system to accommodate purge credit requirements. The next best thing is to eliminate any waits, warm-ups, or stays in the unit’s ignition process.

Fire on the fly is a cost effective controls modification that reduces all of those times. Updating the loading time is usually achieved with simple software modifications that don’t require a major capital investment.

Take Your Unit from Vintage to Fast Start Ready with TTS.

These updates and modifications should all be looked at on a case-by-case basis to determine the best outcome for your unit. At TTS, we don’t look at all units as the same. Our team will provide a custom consultation on your unit and help you determine the best modifications that will take your unit from vintage to Fast Start ready. Getting units up and running is not only necessary for grid stability, but for your own revenue goals. That’s our promise at TTS.

Why involving a commissioning team early is critical to saving time and money

We’ve been commissioning power plants and compressor stations for over 35 years, and we’ve seen how easy it is for processes to break down when following an urgent timetable. No one intends to skip corners, especially when working on mission-critical equipment for the plant, but oversights do happen, resulting in costly fixes and lost time if they’re not caught early in the construction process.

Adapt to the flow of the project

Proper planning, communication, coordination, and the ability to adapt to the flow of the project on site are all crucial to nullifying the possibility of timetable setbacks and achieving project objectives. By involving a commissioning team lead early, you stand to reduce the risk of project slippage and associated costs. Commissioning and Startup is the integration of the individual construction elements with a focus on equipment, system and signal integrity.

The TTS team approach has successfully implemented this commissioning and startup methodology, saving clients tens of thousands of dollars in time, materials and labor.

Proper Planning With Project Team Execution Can Save Time and Money

By including a knowledgeable Commissioning Team Lead early in the project, you’re providing additional insight and awareness of equipment installation to the project team.

Focus on timely commissioning → The Commissioning Team Lead supports the construction and project team with a focus on timely commissioning and startup using a comprehensive commissioning checklist and associated sign-off in the commissioning manual.

Unify teams and achieve objectives → Construction drawings are reviewed, and coordinated installation and commissioning plans are developed with the construction and project team for a holistic approach to achieve the project’s many objectives flawlessly the first time.

Meet and stay in compliance → Monitoring the project’s progress in tandem with a commissioning checklist and sign-off within the commissioning manual ensures that equipment and infrastructure are within compliance rather than waiting until after the project team has left to discover problems.

Examples: Non-Compliance

Commissioning and Startup focus on equipment, system and signal integrity confirms the plant is ready for operation. It is not unusual to encounter non-compliance or concerns during this time. Typical commissioning and startup non-compliance items range from very minor to significant major impact elements such as signal integrity/noise to equipment high vibrations during operation or worse.

Signal Integrity

Noise on an instrument or control signal has been known to impact station startup. The noise may be caused by a number of different sources. Grounding grid not performing correctly, power cable position and termination problems are just a few of these.

Equipment High Vibration

Things happen during construction that can have an adverse effect on the commissioning or startup of the equipment resulting in high vibration levels during equipment operation. The construction team works hard to avoid problems and if they do happen to resolve them correctly. However problems can still arise for commissioning and startup of the equipment. By having the Commissioning Team Lead involved early with the construction and project team provides an additional resource to benefit the project. Rather than waiting until the full commissioning team is onsite the commissioning checks can begin sooner in the process.

Equipment high vibration can be caused by a number of things. Foundation, grout, hold-down system, alignment, vibration monitoring system and internal equipment problems to name just a few. Foundation problems would include surface roughness prior to grouting, concrete pour and fill for baseplates and hold-down bolting as some typically encountered causes.  Experience has found grout not adhere correctly due to surface roughness prior to pouring, hold-down bolting issues that resulted in soft-foot issues and incorrect concrete fill for baseplates (too little or too much). Project timeline is just one of the impacted consequences.

Take the Guesswork Out of a Smart Startup

The road to smart startup begins with cohesive project management and The Commissioning Team Lead can be of assistance during the construction phase to assist in avoiding these types of startup problems. Catching the anomaly during the construction phase whenever possible assists in maintaining the commissioning and startup project schedule.

What if I Don’t Include a Commissioning Team Lead Early in the Process?

Hiring a commissioning lead to participate in the initial construction and installation stages is good insurance. By not involving a commissioning lead early on, you open yourself to the potential of lagging timelines, additional costs, and lost operational profit.

Consider an equipment high vibration problem during startup that was due to the foundational concrete as an example. Fixing a foundation problem can take as little as  2 days or longer than 30 days depending upon the extent of the required repair work, and time for the material to harden. Elimination / avoidance of non-conformance items that result in equipment vibrations is the most effective. Having a commissioning team lead involved early to assist the construction team has shown to have a positive impact on the project. What is the most cost-effective and minimal risk approach? Each project is unique.

Signal integrity solutions may be an easy or difficult fix depending upon the cause. Finding the problem sooner during the construction phase affords a corrective action that is generally easier to resolve than finding it later in the commissioning phase requiring greater rework effort. Every time one of these setbacks is discovered too late, it pushes the plant’s operations handover further back. If the project team has already left the facility, they need to be called back to enact the fixes, creating additional costs.



Stay On Track, On Time And On Budget
Involve TTS’s Teams Early in Your Project

By including a skilled commissioning team early in the process, you’re safeguarding yourself from potential setbacks and involving experts who can think outside the box. Our specialists have commissioned hundreds of power plants and compressor stations across the world, giving them the necessary experience to see opportunities where others might not.

Save yourself the headache and the financial strain. Keep your project on track with TTS.


TTS Power Delivers Successful Commissioning and Start-up in Ohio Power Plant

TTS Power Completes Major Modernization project on Critical Vintage Power Generation Assets

Orlando, Florida – 9-15-21 – TTS Power, an Orlando-based Energy Services Company, recently commissioned a second Gas Turbine Generator Modernization project in Ohio.  The upgrades will enable the plant to deliver critical power to consumers as standby generation during peak load demand, emergencies and transmission line maintenance.

‌Engineers and Technicians from TTS Power (Dave Simmons, Chris Crowell, Andrew Younker, Eliana Herrera, Wyatt Brooks, C.T. Wilson) recently completed and fully commissioned the 2nd of two Westinghouse 191 Gas Turbine Generator Modernization Projects for a public utility in Northwest Ohio. The modernization project consisted of Turbine and Generator control system upgrades, complete gas and liquid fuel system upgrades, and multiple instrumentation upgrade packages. Over the past year, TTS Power designed, built, delivered, installed and commissioned both units successfully and on time.


Control Panel Install
Old System Demo
New Human Machine Interface


At a time when the energy market is evolving, legacy oil and gas-fired units are held in reserve to meet peak demand for a few hours each day on the grid or in emergency situations.  The benefits of retrofitting and modifying these units far outweigh the alternative of “putting them out to pasture” as an unused piece of equipment.  The goal of the Ohio-based power plant was to make their assets flexible, reliable and available for energy output when called upon.  The TTS team worked for over a year to install and implement upgrades and modifications to the existing Westinghouse gas/diesel turbine rated at 15,730 kW.

The scope of the project included the following upgrades:

  • Turbine control system upgrade
  • Excitation and generator protection upgrade
  • On-site project management of electrical and mechanical sub-contractors


Upgrade PS&G Panel
New Speed Pick-Ups
New Fuel Valve


Mechanical Upgrades

  • New gas fuel control valve and instrumentation
  • New liquid fuel control valve and instrumentation
  • Liquid fuel flow divider installation
  • Instrumentation cabinet overhaul – new devices and rewire
  • Turbine speed sensor retrofit – added 5 speed pickups for turbine speed and turbine gear speed

TTS Engineers: Andrew Younker (Front) and Chris Crowell (Back)

TTS’s team of technicians and engineers worked on-site at the power plant to make all of the necessary upgrades and modifications within the project scope and deadline. In response to the job completion, the Power Production Superintendent of the City Utilities Company in Ohio said, “We have thoroughly enjoyed having your team upgrade our Westinghouse generators.  They have accommodated all of our needs and brought a great level of professionalism and customer service that I have not seen from many contractors.  Thanks for everything and I would recommend TTS to any of your future customers.”

TTS Power (a service group of TTS) specializes in innovative and high-value-engineered solutions that help clients maintain, upgrade and enhance existing power generation and gas compression assets.  For over three decades, our technicians and engineers have provided comprehensive gas turbine technology expertise to the global energy market.

Power Engineering Solutions include:

Customers interested in TTS’s Power services are encouraged to reach out to TTS for a full consultation and get the power solutions that they need for operational excellence and efficiency.

For more information about TTS, visit

About TTS Energy Services

TTS provides engineering and construction expertise, for the energy industry, worldwide. The company’s long history and experience providing technical solutions to global energy entities makes it a leader in its field. TTS has successfully managed numerous power and compressor station modernization projects and supplied innovative and unique engineering solutions to challenging problems for our energy customers.  Since 1983, their leadership and engineering teams have provided innovative technologies and engineered high-value solutions to over 450 clients worldwide.

‌TTS Midstream Commissioning and O&M Services

TTS Engineers provide expert commissioning services in North Florida to deliver natural gas during critical times to plants and consumers.

Orlando, Florida – 4/28/2021 – TTS Midstream, an Orlando-based Energy Services Company , recently commissioned a new booster compressor station in North Florida. This new station will deliver critical natural gas to plants and consumers in the area.


TTS Crew in front of OEM

Engineers and Technicians from TTS Midstream (L-R): Erica Burt, Lee Molton, Dave Fry, Gabriel Viera (Andrew Younker, Ron Whitaker; not pictured) recently assisted the station engineering and construction teams in commissioning a new booster compressor station in North Florida. The station will deliver natural gas to consumers and power stations in the region.

In addition to commissioning services, TTS Midstream will now assume the Operations and Maintenance duties and will be installing a remote monitoring system which will allow the owner and operators to monitor the plant remotely and maintain integrity during unmanned operations.

The plant consists of two high speed separable reciprocating compressors (approx. 1900 HP ea.) and can operate independently or in parallel. The plant is capable of 20 to 124 MMSCFD of natural gas.

Dave Fry, TTS Midstream Commissioning Manager stated, “The TTS Midstream Team, working under a compressed schedule, utilized out-of-the-box thinking to safely achieve project objectives including startup and commissioning the main compression equipment and plant auxiliaries within the project constraints and regulatory compliance.”

TTS Midstream (a service group of TTS) offers customized integrated solutions for the engineering, commissioning and control systems for pipeline assets (and other Oil and Petrochemical Operators) including turbines, compressors, pumps, etc. With extensive pipeline experience, breadth of service portfolio, and expertise in gas turbines, reciprocating engines, compressors, electrification, automation, and digitalization TTS delivers comprehensive solutions that address the issues and challenges facing North American midstream operators.

Customers interested in their Midstream services are encouraged to reach out to TTS for a full consultation and get the power solutions that they need for operational excellence and efficiency.

For more information about TTS, visit

About TTS Energy Services

TTS provides engineering and construction expertise, for the energy industry, worldwide. The company’s long history and experience providing technical solutions to global energy entities makes it a leader in its field. TTS has successfully managed numerous power and compressor station modernization projects and supplied innovative and unique engineering solutions to challenging problems for our energy customers. Since 1983, their leadership and engineering teams have provided innovative technologies and engineered high-value solutions to over 450 clients worldwide.

TTS helps commission two Texas compressor stations

On-Time Commissioning Helps Plant Meet Growing Energy Demands in Mexico


TTS was asked to provide equipment and services for a major gas company in the process of building two large compressor stations near the Texas-Mexico border.  The projects were unique due to the amount of horsepower being installed. The end user of the gas being pumped through the line was the Mexico utility.  TTS completed the project on time and helped the client commission the plants ahead of schedule.

A Quarter Million HP to Manage & Control at the TX-MX Border

In 2016, a Texas pipeline company received a 168 mile (270 km) intrastate gas pipeline project from Mexico’s state-owned utility serving 37 million customers. Through the project, natural gas transportation services, set for operation in 2018, would help meet Mexico’s growing electric generation needs.

The planned facilities included 168 miles (270 km) of intrastate pipeline; a nearly 170,000 hp (126,769 kW) compressor station located outside of Corpus Christi, Texas; and a nearly 100,000 hp (74,570 kW) compressor station located outside of Brownsville, Texas.

With that scope in mind, TTS received a contract for building and commissioning the pipeline station’s control and emergency shutdown panels.

Pipeline from Texas-Mexico Border
Pipeline from Texas-Mexico Border

TTS Services and Solutions

For the last 35 years, TTS has been serving the power and energy industry with innovative and reliable engineering expertise.  The company has managed gas turbine installations, modernization projects and high-value engineering solutions for clients across the globe.

For the pipeline project, the team at TTS combined automation and controls experience and gas compressor station design expertise to achieve lower overall plant operating costs, increase flexibility and availability while reducing risk.  The scope of the project included the following control panel and automation upgrades and field services from TTS:

  • Network Topology: The SCPs and ESDs utilized the Ethernet-based Device Level Ring architecture for the processor I/O connections. This architecture, a combination of copper and fiber, is based on the Converged Plant wide Ethernet (CPwE) with Device Level Ring (DLR) architecture specified by Rockwell Automation. Each panel has two 1783-ETAP1F embedded switches for the Device Level Ring (DLR) over fiber between the panels. The SCP master panel has two Stratix 5700 managed Ethernet switches.
  • Power Supplies: Power supplies were configured in an N+1 configuration utilizing a redundancy module on the output of the power supplies. The first redundant power supply is fed from the 120VAC utility power and power supply fed from the 120VAC utility power and the second is fed from the UPS-supplied 120VAC inverter panel. Each power supply is sized to operate on its own with a 30% margin for the panel 24VDC devices and field I/O.
  • Inputs and Outputs (I/O): I/O modules were allocated to provide at least 20% spare. Each digital output was wired to a 24VDC interposing relay. Each digital input was wired to a 3-level terminal block with fuse and ground terminal. Each analog input card was wired for single-ended current input, and each input wired to a 3-level terminal block with fuse and ground terminal. Each analog output card was wired for current output and a 3-level terminal block with a ground terminal. Wiring from I/O cards utilizes Allen-Bradley factory cables with pre-wired card fronts.
  • Enclosures: Control panels for the SCP and ESP panels are NEMA Type 12 enclosures with top entry. Outdoor remote I/O panels were specified as NEMA type 4X and configured for bottom entry.
  • Chassis Configuration: Each chassis was sized for at least 10% spare card allocation.
  • Software: TTS provided programming based on the provided documentation, such as P&ID diagrams, cause and effect matrices, system descriptions and control philosophies. The software version of Studio5000 was specified by the operator and compatible with ControlLogix redundancy firmware. The software program is open and configurable by the pipeline company. TTS provided one copy of Logix Designer software, 9324-RLD700NXENM (Studio5000 Professional).

A Trusted Resource for On-time Execution

With the help of TTS, the plant in Mexico was able to commission services on-time and ahead of schedule.  The upgrades brought greater stability and reliability to the gas transportation pipeline.  Thus, the plant could begin to respond to the rising demand for energy in Mexico while providing revenue to the plant.

“TTS engineers and technicians logged over 15,000 man-hours in engineering, programming, fabrication, installation and commissioning to get this project completed for the customer,” said Dave Simmons, TTS’ director of engineering.

For more information on this project, read the full article from Compressor Tech 2 here.

Ways to Take Advantage of High Value Generating Opportunities

Many factors have converged over the last few years to increase the opportunities for generating plants to take advantage of high spot market power prices. There is increasing value in improving the ability of existing gas turbines units to get on-line quickly (fast start) and/or to produce more power when they are on-line.

TTS has supported customers in identifying multiple ways to achieve both of these goals. The strategies to support fast start include reconfiguring fuel systems to eliminate purge requirements during startup, addressing other startup delay issues and improving start reliability and repeatability.

Opportunities to increase power output include optimizing existing firing temperature settings, increasing mass flow, implementing and optimizing peak firing operation and associated combustion system performance. Our recent webinar covers all of these strategies and the associated cost/benefit estimates.  You can view our webinar here:

In our latest blog, we are reviewing the points we covered in our CCJ webinar. Learn more about how to take advantage of opportunities in the market with minimal upgrades and modifications to keep your legacy asset relevant.

Market Drivers

  1. Electricity consumption – As coal plants are retired and phased out, electricity demand continues to grow across the country.
  2. Vintage Units – If they are reliable, flexible and available, vintage gas fire turbines can fill the need in the energy market.
  3. Renewables – while they are projected to make up to 50% of power generation in the United States by 2035, they will always need a reliable backup source due to unpredictability.
  4. New power plant – Planning and building a new plant is time-consuming, expensive and requires navigating regulatory and planning permissions.
  5. Natural Gas – Compared with coal, natural gas is a cheap and clean fossil fuel.  Likewise, it will continue to serve the energy market for the future.
  6. Margin – The reserve margin is decreasing.
  7. Market Opportunities – Spot market opportunities are increasing the high value generation windows.  Fast start opportunities increase with the increase of renewable capacity increases.

High-Value Generation Opportunities

The goal is to get the most out of your legacy machinery.  This includes optimizing your plant with updated capabilities and technology to produce more output when market prices are higher.

This includes Fast Start programs, which require plants to be ready to output power in as little as 10 minutes to maintain grid stability.

Ways to Get Output Optimization

Optimize existing firing temperature – There are several reasons the firing temperature can be sub-optimal:

  • Original design was too conservative
  • Changes in unit mass flow
  • Changes in unit components
  • Fuel changes
  • Unit configuration changes
  • Tuning changes

Thermodynamic modeling of the unit can identify optimum firing temperatures.  It can gain significant MW with only control setting changes.  Ultimately, what you are doing is moving the temperature control line based on the outcome of your analysis.

Increase mass flow – This is the most common way to increase output in legacy assets.  Increasing mass flow is important for gas turbines because their output is a function of the mass flow through the compressor.  As the air temperature goes down, the air gets denser on a base load.  Thus, as the temperature goes down, you get more output from the machinery.  Options to do this include the following:

  • Inlet Fogging
  • Inlet Cooling (Evaporative & Refrigeration)
  • Wet Compression
  • Water / Steam Injection
  • Air Injection
  • IGV Adjustment (7EA/7FA)

The cost-to-benefit varies with the ambient conditions, access to suitable water/steam and Initial Unit Setup.  It depends on what it already available in the environment for the power plant.  Optimizing firing temperature when implementing these approaches will further increase output.

Implement peak firing – Most units are designed for a specific firing temperature where you operate base-load and you have a predictable maintenance life and maintenance factor for all components.  The goal with peak firing is to increase the firing temperature to result in an increase in output.  Features of this upgrade include:

  • “Peak” mode is normally selectable as an alternative to “Base” Operation
  • Operating in the Peak Range may shorten maintenance intervals
  • Firing temperature increase is limited to prevent component damage
  • Setting of Peak can be automatic or manual

The benefit of this upgrade is that it is a simple way to take advantage of high spot market prices.

Optimize peak firing – The goal of optimizing peak firing is to take advantage of what an existing unit can do, what the emissions capabilities are, and what the permitting is on your application.

  • Units must operate within site permit emissions limits
  • Peak firing may cause emissions to exceed limits
  • Need to understand what the site permit allows, hourly versus daily/monthly rolling average limits
  • Variable peak approach allows operation up to the peak firing value while the unit remains in compliance
  • If compliance is not possible at peak firing value, variable peak approach allows maximum firing temperature while maintaining compliance
  • CC units with SCR allow for additional optimization and for additional output

Fast Start

Asset Flexibility

The goal is to make assets, especially older assets, more flexible.  It improves the ability of the generation fleet to change its output (ramp) rapidly, start and stop with short notice and achieve a low minimum turn-down level.  There are two categories for asset flexibility:

  1. Non-Spinning Reserve:  Generation and responsive load that is off-line but can be fully responsive within 30 minutes.
  2. Supplemental Reserve:  Generation and responsive load that is off-line but can be fully responsive within 10 minutes.  Premium is available for 10 minute start in many markets.

The chart below gives a general overview of Start up time and loading rates for diesel and motor devices.

Diesel & Motor device load up and start times table

Getting to 10 Minutes

There are different strategies for different units, but the following are some of the most common implementations for most units:

Eliminate purge, implement changes to comply with NFPA 85 Purge Credit Standard – After a normal stop, the unit is purged and this purge counts as the purge for the next start, resulting in significant start up time savings.  NFPA(R) 85 2015 has specific requirements that must be adhered to in order to establish and maintain the Purge Credit.

Implement Fast Load – Increase the loading rate; a review of the generator capability is required.  Load in extended lean-lean and fast transfer to premix (FTP).

Eliminate “Warm-up” delays –  Increase the time it takes to start a turbine, effectively eliminating delays for the plant to be available for output.

Market Opportunities Graph
Ensure unit start reliability – There are several modifications and upgrades to consider for improving starting reliability.

  • On-base device upgrade and rationalization
  • Rewires
  • Hydraulic/Pneumatic system removal/Fuel system simplification
  • Control system upgrade (turbine)
  • Excitation/Production system upgrade (electrical)
The chart below gives a summary of each potential upgrade and modification that could help ensure unit start reliability.  All plant managers should consider the cost/benefit for each modification that is relevant to their specific plant.

Potential Upgrades/Modifications System Benefit Drivers/Costs
On-Base Device Upgrade and Rationalization
  • “Low hanging fruit”. Simple and effective upgrade
  • Remove single point of failure and eliminate trips
  • Improve available information
  • Improved Reliability
  • Improved Availability
  • Reduced maintenance
  • Where a driver is present the benefit is high relative to cost for implementation of redundancy and replacement of critical items
  • Eliminate Grounds
  • Eliminate Canon Plugs
  • Eliminate Signal leakages
  • Improved Reliability
  • Improved Availability
  • Reduced maintenance
  • With one or more drivers cost is low for benefits gained
Hydraulic/Pneumatic System Removal/Fuel System Simplification
  • Elimination of Servos/Positioners
  • System Simplification (Single Valve)
  • Easier Setup/Calibration
  • Improved Reliability
  • Improved Availability
  • Greatly Improved Functionality and Flexibility
  • Without one or more drivers cost is high for benefits gained
  • With one or more drivers cost is low for benefits gained
Control System Upgrade (Turbine)
  • Resolve obsolescence and aging issues
  • Improved Reliability
  • Improved Availability
  • Greatly Improved Functionality and Flexibility
  • Improved data availability and retention – improved troubleshooting and operational data
  • Reduced maintenance costs
  • TMR usually isn’t worth it
  • Without one or more drivers cost is high for benefit gained
  • With one or more drivers, cost to benefit equation improves significantly
Excitation/Protection System Upgrade (Electrical)
  • System Simplification especially with replacement of individual protection relays
  • Easier setup and testing
  • Improved Reliability
  • Improved Availability
  • Greatly Improved Functionality and Flexibility
  • Improved data availability and retention
  • Lower Maintenance Costs
  • Without one or more drivers cost is high for benefit gained
  • With one or more drivers, cost to benefit equation improves significantly


TTS Stands with You

While the energy market continues to evolve, we are confident that fossil fuels will stay relevant well into the future for their reliability and accessibility.  If you are interested in learning more about how to make your turbine or legacy asset a high-value generation option, talk to our team members at TTS.  We are a team of engineers and technicians with over 30 years of experience providing high-value expertise to improve unit reliability and performance.  Call us at  407.677.0813 or contact  TTS Energy Services.



About the Presenters

Pat Begley, VP SalesHeadshot of Pat Begley, VP of Sales

Pat brings over 29 years of gas turbine experience to Turbine Technology Services.

Prior to his current role, Pat was employed by Sermatech Power Solutions serving as Executive Manager of Corporate Sales. In the 1990’s, Pat worked for TTS as Vice President of Corporate Sales and with HSDE Inc. as Manager of Industrial and Marine Business Development.

In his early career with General Electric, Chromalloy, Unitech and HSDE, Pat developed his extensive knowledge of heavy rotating equipment by performing engineering roles including Mechanical Field Service Engineer (GE and Chromalloy), Speedtronic Control System Service/Startup Engineer (GE and Chromalloy), PLC Control System Development Engineer (Unitech) and Controls Group Engineering Manager (HSDE).

Pat was born in Ireland. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Dublin and MBA from the University of Houston.

Pat Begley
VP, TTS Power
Phone/WhatsApp: +1 407.810.8997
Skype Address: tts_begley


Ricky Morgan, VP Engineering Headshot of Ricky Morgan, VP of Engineering

Ricky brings over 30 years of electrical and controls engineering experience and is responsible for all technical aspects of TTS’ products and services. Prior to joining TTS, Ricky was employed by Sermatech Power Solutions, serving as the International Executive Manager for the Middle East and previously as Vice President of Turbine Systems Engineering.

Ricky was born in Scotland, where he earned his Bachelor’s degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from Strathclyde University, Glasgow. More recently, he graduated from the University of Central Florida with his MBA.

Ricky Morgan
VP Engineering
Mobile: +1.407.399.0312
Skype Address: pfmorgan

Gas Turbine Reapplication: A Market Comeback

In recent years there has been a resurgence in existing gas turbine power plants being picked up and reapplied throughout the world. Many thousands of megawatts have recently been relocated from Asia to West Africa; Europe to Australia; Europe to East Africa; within USA; within West Africa; and so on…

Factors Driving Turbine Reapplication

Factors that have contributed to the return of this segment of the power market include the following: the availability of retired units; the emergence of newly available low-cost gas fuel in international markets; the need for fast-start gas turbines; and the ability to benefit once again from quickly installed units operating in the domestic US peaking power market.

The California ISO market’s demand for fast start power has triggered relocation projects in surrounding areas to provide power for that market. Also, the inconsistency of renewable power, particularly wind, in Texas ERCOT and other western states has created a need for back up for both power and for grid stability. This situation, combined with the abundance of natural gas, make the case for relocating fast start gas turbines and other gas fired generators into these areas.

Contributing to Dynamic Power Markets

The fast delivery of these reapplied gas turbines, with lower capital costs than new, and the ability to operate on a wide range of fuels make them an important solution to many of the opportunities in today’s dynamic power markets. The modular design of a gas turbine package, with a much smaller footprint per Mw than reciprocating engines, allows them to be quickly and easily installed in even the most remote locations. Although not having the same efficiency of today’s advanced-class gas turbines, these older units can still provide a very important contribution to emerging grids and the peaking power market.

Each relocation project has its own unique requirements. These may include the need for asset refurbishment, fuel conversions, frequency conversions (if moving between 50Hz and 60Hz countries), other upgrades and modifications, and installation of equipment necessary to allow the units to operate in compliance of local environmental regulations. Logistics are an extremely important part of a relocation project, with care taken to ensure dismantled equipment is identified, tagged and removed properly so as to ensure an efficient, low-cost installation at the new site.

TTS Energy Services: At the Forefront of Gas Turbine Reapplication

Many relocation projects are undertaken by entrepreneurial developers that recognize an opportunity to quickly provide cost-effective power to a specific market. However, these developers often do not have the existing technical and commercial infrastructure to efficiently deal with all aspects of building a power plant, as well as obtaining all the required contracts and permitting.

TTS Energy Services is at the forefront of the gas turbine relocation market. We are responsible for the relocation of close to 90 gas turbines having a total of almost 3,000 megawatts. We have been involved at all levels including turnkey Engineer / Procure / Construct (EPC) contracts, project management and design engineering, upgrade and modification services, cost control, project feasibility studies and site supervision.

With over 30 years of experience in the turbine relocation market, we are the ideal partner for any reapplication project.

How Can We Help You?

Contact TTS and speak with a specialist to discuss and evaluate your possible opportunities for gas turbine relocations, as well as to inquire about assistance with your current relocation project. Leave us a message or call +1 (407) 677-0813 to speak with an expert today.