Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems, Ltd. (MHPS) has begun commissioning of T-Point 2, its new gas turbine combined cycle (GTCC) power plant testing facility at Takasago Works in Hyogo Prefecture, Japan. Replacing the iconic T-Point, the facility will accelerate MHPS’ industry-leading R&D efforts and enable more robust testing of advanced-class gas turbines (ACGTs) such as the 1650°C-class JAC model and 1700°C-class ultrahigh-temperature models in development. Like its predecessor, T-Point 2 stands apart as the only facility in the world housing R&D, design, manufacturing, short-term performance testing and long-term, full-scale reliability verification for gas turbines all in a single location. Connected to the actual grid, it is the only plant of its type in the world that functions as both a technology demonstrator and an electric power producer and supplier.
“Through the years, MHPS has proven its ability to develop and manufacture the most cutting-edge solutions for the power generation industry,” said Mr. Ken Kawai, President and CEO, MHPS. “Building on the legacy of the original T-Point, T-Point 2 will enable MHPS to widen its footprint as the preferred solutions partner to meet ever-changing power generation requirements around the world.”
Engineering the next generation of gas turbines
Once commercial operations begin in July 2020, T-Point 2 is expected to achieve power output of over 566 MW (60Hz), with nearly 64% efficiency, 99.5% reliability and a world-first turbine inlet temperature of 1650°C – raising industry standards for GTCC performance globally. This improved performance will be possible due to the advanced engineering of the upgraded J-Series Air-Cooled (JAC) model, which will be the first gas turbine validated at T-Point 2.
The new facility will also utilize a triple-casing steam turbine, augmenting overall system efficiency through a multiplier effect with the JAC gas turbine. This greater efficiency will reduce carbon emissions and heat loss, significantly reducing the environmental impact of T-Point 2.
“The prototype validation system established by MHPS has given our customers the clear assurance that they are receiving the highest caliber and most reliable energy solutions in the market,” said Mr. Junichiro Masada, Senior Vice President and Senior General Manager of Gas Turbine Technology & Products Integration Division, MHPS. “The launch of T-Point 2 is testament to MHPS’ commitment to deliver industry-leading power generation technology and customer service underpinned by best-in-class methods for performance and durability testing.”
MHPS will also use the facility to conduct R&D for next-generation 1700°C-class ultrahigh-temperature gas turbines, steam turbine upgrades, air-cooled condenser technology, generators, and static frequency converters.
Bringing power generation to the digital age
Work is underway to install advanced artificial intelligence (AI) technologies at T-Point 2, which will feature the MHPS-TOMONI® suite of digital solutions. During the 8,000-hour durability demonstration period, MHPS will train its AI apps, allowing T-Point 2 to eventually become the world’s first autonomous combined cycle power plant. This will catapult power generation into a future where digital technologies are fully integrated into plant operations, allowing plant owners to leverage data to optimize performance; enable predictive maintenance; selectively automate operation and maintenance decision-making; and reduce risk.
With these building blocks, MHPS will remotely monitor and manage total plant performance; remotely operate the plant in coordination with grid and fleet-wide energy management objectives; and utilize sensor and control system data to make smarter operation decisions in real time. MHPS-TOMONI® solutions powered by deep technologies such as AI and machine learning will also enable MHPS to automate O&M decision-making to maximize the profitability of existing and future GTCC plants.