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GE Energy’s Jenbacher Gas Engines Reach Milestone, Using ’Lean Gas’ Created From Synthetic Resins


Four of GE Energy’s Jenbacher specialty gas units that run on waste gas at DYNEA Austria GmbH’s (Finland-based DYNEA is one of the world’s leading providers of industrial adhesive resins) synthetic resins facility recently reached 80,000 operating hours.

Powered by “lean gas” (“Lean gas” is a term generally used to describe gases with a low calorific value. The lean gas used by GE’s Jenbacher engines at DYNEA Austria consists of a mixture of hydrogen, nitrogen, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide and water vapor) created from the production of synthetic resins, the four Jenbacher gen-set units successfully completed their second major overhaul scheduled after surpassing this operating milestone. This innovative power generation solution has proved its worth in the long term, as the engines were quickly returned to service with the customer. The maximum average turnaround time was 15 days at GE’s Jenbacher Repair Center in Jenbach, Austria.

This virtually emission-free energy concept significantly reduces the resins facility’s environmental impact, avoiding more than 13,400 tons of CO2, 1.14 tons of NO2 and 13.71 tons of SO2 emissions every year.

The four Jenbacher systems, which were installed in 1996, are each coupled to generators and catalytic converters as well as to two boilers. The power plant provides a total electrical power output of more than 2.3 MW and can also generate 1,400 kg of steam per hour.

The DYNEA Austria factory is therefore able to use on-site resources to generate about 75 percent of the electricity required for the production of synthetic resins. The combination of synthetic resin production, electricity generation using the process gas, and intensive utilization of waste heat, makes this gas engine power plant virtually self-reliant and self-contained – thus making it exceptionally environmentally sound. Even in the event of a main transmission grid power interruption, DYNEA Austria’s Jenbacher on-site power plant can still support plant operations without interruption.

Due to its largely self-reliant electricity supply, DYNEA Austria has been able to make significant electricity savings coupled with considerably improved efficiency. Additionally, the project also received government subsidies thanks to its low-emission electricity generation and flexible energy supplies.

“The fact that GE’s Jenbacher gas engines are capable of running on gas with such a low calorific value is the key to this innovative power station, designed in collaboration with DYNEA Austria and Vienna University of Technology,” said Prady Iyyanki, CEO of GE Energy’s Jenbacher gas engines division. “In other words, a by-product becomes a valuable raw material. On the one hand, this saves resources, and on the other, it helps to avoid emissions.”

The use of the lean gas produced at DYNEA Austria’s factory indeed represents an important milestone for gas engines. A calorific value of 0.5 to 0.6 kWh/m³N is only about half that of the wood gas normally used to power lean gas engines. In order for the gas to be combusted, it is essential that the gas pressure changes very slowly. A control system developed in collaboration with the Institute for Process Automation at Vienna University of Technology effectively prevents pressure fluctuations.

GE Energy’s Jenbacher gas engine business, based in Jenbach, Austria, is a leading manufacturer of gas-fueled reciprocating engines, packaged generator sets for power generation and cogeneration systems. Jenbacher engines cover an output range of 0.25 to 3 MW and operate on natural gas or a variety of specialty fuels, including landfill and coal mine gas or alternative fuels like biogas, sewage gas and industrial waste gas. Patented combustion systems coupled with advanced engine and plant management systems ensure compliance with the compulsory emission regulations while at the same time offering maximum economy, longevity and reliability.


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