In the current industrial landscape, environment policies and growing demand for greener power generation alternatives is the need of the hour. Further, provisions are in place to reduce dependency on fossil fuels for power generation and increase adoption of environment-friendly alternatives such as natural gas. In addition, several power generation companies are focusing on curbing global warming by reducing their environmental footprint by implementing research and development activities. All these factors combined are fueling the growth of the natural gas turbine market.
In recent years, natural gas turbine market witnessed steady growth owing to factors such as, advancements in technology, availability of natural gas, modernization of existing power generation infrastructure, and environment policies. In addition, the high availability of low-cost-natural gas significantly reduced the demand for coal in developed regions such as North America and Europe.
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At present, technological and product innovations are likely to influence the growth of the natural gas turbine market as major players are investing in restructuring initiatives to reduce costs and offer efficient solutions. In addition, modernization of old facilities that were developed two to three decades ago is likely to drive the demand for natural gas turbines in the coming years. The demand for energy-efficient and cost-effective power generation solutions are likely to create lucrative market opportunities for established and emerging market players in the natural gas turbine market.
Global Natural Gas Turbine Market: Snapshot
Concerns pertaining to global warming has expanded considerably in the past decade and the world has come together to make the paradigm shift off fossil fuel and onto greener alternatives, if not renewable. This factor has given a strong thrust to the exploring and extraction of natural gas, which is turn is stroking the demand for the turbines that serve the purposes.
A number of research and development activities are currently underway to further advance the possibilities with natural gas, and thereby the costs are reducing to make them more affordable for general masses. According to a recent research study from the North Carolina State University, the demand for coal has significantly reduced in the past decade owing to the availability of low cost natural gas. Natural gas turbines have improved significantly too, working as a combustion engines that can serve purpose of converting natural gas into mechanical energy, which can be then used to feed a generator that can transform it into electrical energy. These primarily are indirect systems wherein a heat exchanger is utilized and only cleaner air is passed with no combustion products traveling through the power turbine.
A recent Fact.MR report delivers valuable insights on current and future prospects of the global natural gas turbine market for the period of forecast (2018-2027). An all-inclusive research study has been propounded by the report on natural gas turbine, along with detailed analysis and forecast on the market. Key research findings from the report focus at enhancing the undertakings of prominent market players, so as to enable them in devising their future business decisions.
Evolution of the natural gas turbines has always been in tandem with the market dynamics. With power producers shifting toward natural gas as the fuel of choice, gas turbine manufacturers have taken efforts to keep pace, catering to imperative generator requirements such as reliability and reduced carbon emissions.
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Global Natural Gas Turbine Market: R&D Investments to Surge
In order to boost the procedure of new product cycles, while seeking improvements in design, efficiency and performance of their products, manufacturers in the natural gas turbine market are focusing on making R&D investments. For example, researchers from B&B Agema, and Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI) have collaborated for an R&D initiative dedicated toward a novel design approach, which would increase temperatures at high-pressure natural gas turbine stage inlet and the combustor exit.
The research aims at boosting efficiency without putting much strain on blades and vanes, considering the fact that temperature of modern turbine stage inlet exceed melting points of the turbine blade materials. As the natural gas turbine market perceives consolidation, R&D initiatives will gain more emphasis among manufacturers. As noted in November announcement of Siemens, global natural gas turbine producers possess the capability to manufacture 400 large units with capacity of over 100 MW.
However, current demand is nearly 110 large units annually, which in turn will intensify the competition in the global market for natural gas turbines. Despite low demand, opportunities prevail for advancements in natural gas turbine technology on several levels ranging from technology & rating capacity to design & application. This has further rubbed off on R&D activities in the global natural gas turbine market.
Proliferation of Aero-Derivative Technology to Fuel Upgrades in Natural Gas Turbine Efficiency
Over the years, design engineers have transferred aircraft engine technology to the ground-based units, also called aero-derivative technology, which implies a leap ahead in power production. The technology has further deemed as a key for the generation of combined heat and power (CHP).
The aero-derivative units have currently become essential for balancing integration of the variable power sources, including wind and solar, into the electricity grid. With aero-derivative paving new market possibilities, advancements in turbines for natural gas-fired power production are fuelling efficiency upgrades at a rapid pace. Several upgrades have been introduced over the past few years from leading manufacturers such as GE Power, Siemens, Ansaldo Energia, and Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems (MHPS).
GE Power has launched its largest gas turbine (9HA), which is currently available at a 64% net efficiency in December, 2017. The company claims its new innovation to be the most advanced and efficient natural gas turbine technology till date.
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Global Natural Gas Turbine Market: Growing Emphasis on Reduced Emissions
A key challenge backing up the intermittent power generation with gas is significant increase in emissions, which is attributed to several factors such as high level of NOx and Co emissions by operating gas turbine at low loads. Rapid changes in the turbine output are linked with disruption of equilibrium between the selective catalytic reduction and fuel.
Additional pilot fuel needed during the load alterations further results into increased NOx emissions. Moreover, maintaining accurate ammonia injection level in SCR is more challenges when the turbine load is changing. In a bid to curtail emission challenges, fast ignition turbine technology, imperative for combined cycle plants to initiate & ramp, while responding to grid fluctuations, is a key attribute of R&D efforts currently.
Major turbine manufacturers such as Siemens have recently introduced a fast-starting plant technology, which is designed to address emission-related problems. A prime example of such technology is Siemens Flex-Plant employed at Lodi Energy Center, California. Improvements in design of heat recovery steam generator (HRSG) enable fast start up of such plants, and eliminate low load holds, thereby reducing emissions.
Detailed Analysis on Natural Gas Turbine Market
Essential elements associated with production, utilization, and application of natural gas turbine have been identified and analyzed in this report. Information from various industry knowledge databases, and authentic trade surveys has been procured, collated, and repurposed for improving accuracy of the forecasts on the global natural gas turbine market.
From supply chain attributes to viability of different materials used, the report has widely included manufacturing concerns apropos natural gas turbine. The data gathered has then been substantiated, and trends affecting the market have been elucidated to understand influence of subjective undercurrents on the overall market growth.
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Mr. Laxman Dadar is an accomplished proficient in statistical surveying composing. His visitor posts and articles have been distributed in driving industry and sites. His interests include fiction, theory, and innovation.