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Fuel Gas Pressure Boosting

There was a lot of talk at the recent Turbo machinery Symposium about fuel gas boosting compressors.  Fuel gas boosting compressors are now a part of most gas turbine systems.  Today’s gas turbine designs operate more efficiently and reliably, but require higher fuel gas pressures than is available from adjacent gas utility pipelines.  To complicate matters, operators must plan for fluctuations in the pipeline pressures.  Although 300 psig is adequate for older industrial gas turbines and could sometimes be reached with pipeline pressures, newer industrial turbines require 600 psig.  Aeroderivative gas turbines can handle load changes more quickly but may require supply gas pressures up to 1000 psig to operate most efficiently.  Because available gas pressures are much lower, fuel gas booster compressors are needed to raise gas supply pressure feeding the gas turbine. FGB compressors must have a large turndown range and the ability to handle gas pressure fluctuations from the pipeline while delivering constant discharge pressure. Fuel gas boosting compressors have recently been deployed in a wide variety of industrial facilities and processes including: peak power plants, oilfield power generation and landfill gas to power projects

What is your experience with fuel gas boosting compressors?  Find out more about fuel gas boosting at

Mark McCormick
Director, Gas Compression
Emerson Climate Technologies

Display Case Energy Standards

If you are involved with refrigerated display cases you might have heard about a new bill before congress called the BURR Act or Better Use of Refrigerator Regulations # H.R. 5710.  This would amend the EPACT 2005, DOE 10 CFR 431 for the portions pertaining to self-contained, medium temperature, service over counter display cases.  This equipment is now classified as a reach-in refrigerator per the DOE 2010 portion of the energy standards.  But because this style of case is all glass and uses a lot of lighting for display of product it has a large heat load as compared to a reach-in, and cannot meet the standards.

If this bill passes the service over counter (SOC) will have its own class and the energy calculation will be based on TDA (total display area) like all the cases covered by DOE 2012 which included SOC remote and ice cream cases. What this means is that the SOC.SC.M cases will now have a chance at meeting the energy standards.

Energy standards have been in place for reach-in refrigerators for many years, including federal minimum efficiency levels which are now in effect.   They were mandated by the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and manufacturers responded.  Since OEMs had already been working on ENERGY STAR models from 2001, it was not a stretch to hit the federal minimum.

The Air Conditioning, Heating & Refrigeration NEWS recently reported on this legislation.

Again, depending on the class of equipment, the calculations defined in the energy standards might be based on refrigerated volume, or could be based on total display area.  This is true for ENERGY STAR and other calculations as well, so be aware of what class of equipment is being considered because allowable energy consumption can vary greatly.

Rajan Rajendran, Ph.D
Vice President, Engineering Services and Sustainability
Emerson Climate Technologies

Electrical Safety in the Workplace

Electricity…Electricity…Electricity…we cannot live without it!  Electricity is so embedded into the fabric of our lives that we often take it for granted without notice of its significance.  Before you go to bed tonight walk through your living quarters and take notice of the green, red and orange LEDs peering at you from dark corners – electricity busy at work while we sleep.

In the refrigeration world, our wonderful compressors are not very useful unless they have a reliable and safe supply of electricity.  For the most part, we rely on our local electrical utility to provide us with a reliable, clean and secure electricity supply.  As far as safety, in the United States, we have codes, standards and certifications such as National Fire Protection Association 70 National Electric Code, National Fire Protection Association 70E Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace, Occupational Safety and Health Act and Underwriters Laboratories that protect us from the potential dangers of electricity such as shock, fire and explosions from an arc flash event.

While it is true that energized components and conductors are usually safely mounted in enclosures, there are times when those of us who work in the industrial and commercial refrigeration industry need to interact with, and actually touch energized components with meters and tools when trying to troubleshoot or repair equipment. This can be a very dangerous task and is a primary concern of ours when designing and building electrical equipment.

So, we would like to hear from you – what are you doing in the workplace to safely handle electrical hazards?  Do you understand NFPA 70E?  Are you complying with NFPA 70E?

Vilter Manufacturing will have a booth at the upcoming Refrigeration Engineers and Technicians Association 2012 National Conference in San Antonio, Texas from November 5-9.  We will have our NFPA 70E inspired motor starter with us and I will be presenting a short piece on our motor starter on Friday morning November 9th.  For more details, visit

I hope to hear from you soon – stay safe!

Dennis Doody
Project Manager – Motor Starters
Vilter Manufacturing – Emerson Climate Technologies

FMI Energy Event

Speaking of energy regulations and the Emerson white paper on this subject…..did you catch the recent FMI Energy and Store Development conference in Phoenix, AZ?

I thought that this was an excellent meeting with a host of technical topics that were very relevant and timely in the presentations and discussions.  We at Emerson presented twice on the topic of refrigeration systems and refrigerants.  If you missed this conference, click on the link below for all the fine presentations from the many authors!,5

Rajan Rajendran, Ph.D
Vice President, Engineering Services and Sustanability
Emerson Climate Technologies


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