Advantages of clutchless synchronous condensing

GE’s clutchless synchronous condenser allows the generator to provide frequency and reactive-power support to the grid. Through controls-system enhancements, this upgrade foregoes the standard synchronous, self-shifting clutch that disengages the generator.


Synchronous condensing boosts power

A clutchless synchronous condenser increases the capabilities of an existing LM2500 power island by allowing the generator to act as a synchronous condenser… without the complexity and cost of adding a clutch.

GE’s solution for expanding operational flexibility alters the controls to run the gas turbine starter when in sync condensing mode. This helps to create proper lubrication of the gas turbine bearings while the generator is used for reactive power.

For LM2500 gas turbines

Elimination of the clutch allows any unit to be used in sync condensing mode (where the AC generator is supporting the utility grid with voltage provision).

This upgrade is applicable to the LM2500 gas turbine packages—with several elements required to implement:

  • A current OEM control system (Woodward: MicroNet+ or Flex 500; GE: Mark VIe)
  • Sump evacuation system to prevent oil leaks that can cause fouling
  • Site-protective relay scheme and local regulatory requirements may limit MVAR capability