3DP Applications

Siemens seeks validation for 3D printed burners key to 100% renewable energy for Gothenburg

Award-winning industrial manufacturing company Siemens is in the process of validating 3D printed burners key to a fossil-free fuel initiative in Sweden. Part of a cooperation agreement between the conglomerate and Göteborg Energi, the power provider owned by the City of Gothenburg, Siemens is testing state-of-the-art gas turbine technology that enables the operation of renewable fuels. 3D printing will accelerate the development of these turbines, supporting Gothenburg’s 10-year ambition to generate all district heating from renewable or recovered energy sources.

“The Rya CHP plant plays an important role in Gothenburg’s electricity supply,” said Alf Engqvist, CEO of Göteborg Energi.

“Working together with Siemens we want to explore the possibilities for the conversion of both electric power and heat production as pieces of the puzzle in our work for fossil-free energy independence.”

100 percent fossil-free

The RYA combined heat and power (CHP) plant where this project will take place is currently fueled by natural gas. To generate power, the plant runs three GT-1 SGT-800 gas turbines, and one ST-1 SST-900 DH steam turbine, with the combined capacity to generate an output of 276 MW.

Introducing new turbines, containing 3D printed burners, the plan is to reduce the gas consumption of the GT-1 SGT-800 turbines gradually over time. To do so, the site will co-burn natural gas with an increasing share of hydrogen or biofuel, thereby reducing its emissions.

“Our goal is to run the SGT-600, -700 and -800 gas turbine combustors 100 percent fossil-free,” states Thorbjoern Fors, CEO Siemens Distributed Generation and Oil & Gas Services Business.

“This is a unique cooperation between Siemens and a customer that can demonstrate the varied possibilities for sustainable and cost-effective fuels as our industry and societies look to reduce carbon emissions around the world.”

The first test SGT-800 turbine has already been installed at RYA CHP and Siemens is now working to validate its 3D printed burners.

Committed to AM

In 2017, Siemens won Application of the Year in the 3D Printing Industry Awards for its additive manufactured turbine blades, used in the SGT-400. Reinforcing its commitment to additive manufacturing for gas and power, in July 2019 the company assumed the role of project manager for the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) Industrial implementation of digital engineering and additive manufacturing (IDEA) grant project. Prototypes for industrial production lines developed in this project are to be built in the Siemens gas turbine factory in Berlin and at MBFZ toolcraft in Georgensgmünd.

3D printed nickel supper alloy turbine blades. Photo via: Siemens
Siemens’ award-winning 3D printed nickel super alloy turbine blades. Photo via: Siemens

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Featured image shows a SGT-800 gas turbine. Image via Siemens