Furmanite’s solution results in breakthrough for TVA

HOUSTON, Jan. 5, 2005 — Furmanite, the world’s first and largest industrial specialty maintenance service company, recently announced the creation and successful implementation of solution created specifically for the Tennessee Valley Authority’s (TVA) Sequoyah Nuclear Plant in Soddy Daisy, Tennessee.

This solution will prevent the plant from experiencing unscheduled shut downs and reduce financial expenditures that come as a result of these unexpected shutdowns. Following the execution of this unique solution, TVA requested that Furmanite service an additional eight pumps at this same location.

“For more than 20 years, Furmanite has provided leak sealing and machining services to the Tennessee Valley Authority,” said Gary Gardner, President of Furmanite North America. “As part of that relationship, we continuously strive to provide forward-thinking solutions that will ultimately improve the client’s bottom line. We are pleased to continue and build upon our partnership with TVA and look forward to future work in other areas of the Sequoyah plant, as well as additional TVA locations.”

The challenge

Furmanite was called upon to develop and implement a solution for servicing two of TVA Sequoyah’s most challenging pump bases. TVA’s 2C CBP and 2B #7 HDTP pump machines had a long history of issues and inefficiency and had progressively worsened over the years. Specifically, TVA’s two pump machines were experiencing tremendously high vibration levels. Its motors consistently ran in TVA’s PDM Alert range for vibration (above 0.325 ipsp). In one month, the vibration in the OB horizontal for the motor was recorded at 0.550 ipsp and the IB horizontal was 0.523 ipsp.

According to Furmanite, this vibration is often caused by how the pumps are mounted on the bases. The pumps are mounted on the steel bases with grout. Over the years, the grout wears down and a void is created between the bases and grout. If the “drive shaft” between the motor and pump is not perfectly aligned, the bearings wear causing tremendous vibration. As a result the entire system does not run properly, and can be extraordinarily costly to repair.

The solution

Furmanite’s solution, however, was not only ranked among one of the most efficient, but cost-effective as well. The solution entailed assessing the vibration and alignment level of the pumps and bases and providing pressure grouting and pumping and machining services for the two pump bases. The pump bases were 16 feet 8 inches by 6 feet by 2 inches wide. Initially, on-site Furmanite technicians laser scanned the bases to determine their combined tolerance level ¿ off by 100 ths.

Prior to pumping the bases, Furmanite conducted acoustic testing to determine if there was a void. Then Furmanite technicians drilled holes and pumped the epoxy resin into the hole. The first base required two and a half units of epoxy resin. The second base took three units. The following day acoustic testing determined the levels were within tolerance.
After the bases were pumped, Furmanite determined that the machine level ¿ where the motors and pumps meet ¿ was out of alignment by 100 thousandth. They were then machined to create perfect alignment between the motor and the pump, which brought the bases back within tolerance level of 1 ths.

“Anytime we continue, extend or improve upon the uptime of a customer’s facility ¿ subsequently reducing the amount of time a plant must be shut down ¿ we are saving any plant an incredible amount of money,” said Tim Coughlin, Concrete and Composites Technical Representative for Furmanite.

About TVA

TVA is America’s largest public power company, with 31,658 megawatts of dependable generating capacity. TVA’s power facilities include 11 fossil plants, 29 hydroelectric dams, three nuclear plants, six combustion turbine plants, a pumped-storage facility, and 17,000 miles of transmission lines. Through 158 locally owned distributors, TVA provides power to nearly 8.5 million residents in the Tennessee Valley.

About Furmanite [ www.furmanite.com ]

2004 represents 75 years of Furmanite serving as ‘the’ worldwide expert in the field of on-site and on-line plant and pipeline maintenance for a variety of industries ¿ chemical and petrochemical, oil and gas, power generation, pulp and paper, pharmaceutical, and national defense. Their broad array of services and patented technology are critical to the operation and financial success of some of the world’s largest process manufacturers and energy producers and suppliers including Shell, ExxonMobil, Sun Oil, Dominion, Exelon, Cinergy, Entergy and Reliant. Furmanite has more than 40 offices on five continents.

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The Clarion Energy Content Team is made up of editors from various publications, including POWERGRID International, Power Engineering, Renewable Energy World, Hydro Review, Smart Energy International, and Power Engineering International. Contact the content lead for this publication at Jennifer.Runyon@ClarionEvents.com.

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