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Perfomance curves for recip compressor are usually, if not always, constructed in as new condition. But, what happens when seals deteriorate with time?. Can one use OEM performance curves to control unhealthy cylinders?. Surely and only for orientation purposes, as a reference point.
Updating performance maps according to accumulated wear can help field operators and analysts to estimate the recommended Variable Volume Clearance Pockets (VVCP) settings due to changing process conditions (Ps, Pd) and to match flow readings either from electronic analyzers or meters.
Accumulated wear moves (downwards) the power and flow curves thus disabling the "as new" VVCP curve.
The governing criteria for this analysis is that, as running time degrades compressor performance, the volumetric efficiencies (VEs) drop due to increasing leakages in the seals. Certainly, degraded VEs can be obtained with the electronic analyzer. On the other hand, as new VEs can be obtained either from electronic analyzers or from constant VE maps as shown in this analysis.
Here you will find a practical quasi-empirical approach to quantify wear in both engine and compressor side, and to depict a wear map with the help of an in-house compresser modeller.
At its own, engine wear appears easier to handle with the help of either a combustion pressure or static (cold) compression indicator.
Preliminary criteria for establishing alarm and trip levels is provided.