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Power Panels & Roundtables

Description: The steam condenser is the heat exchanger which can have the largest impact to overall plant efficiency. Regular inspection and maintenance is key to ensuring optimum condenser performance and this panel of experts will discuss how to get the most benefit from typical condenser inspection and maintenance work. The panelists will present brief presentations on air in-leakage testing, eddy current tube testing, and maintenance/repair strategies before opening the floor for a Q&A-style discussion of the these and related topics. Particular emphasis will be given to getting the most impact from these activities at fossil plants facing reduced budgets and early retirement dates, but the strategies can apply to any type of thermal power plant featuring a steam surface condenser.


Description: Join the panel as they discuss Fossil, Nuclear, and other electric generation facilities can benefit by leveraging robotics and drone technology. Robotics and drone technologies enhance productivity of inspection and maintenance practices. Utilizing robotics and drones; particularly deployed in confined and other hazardous applications, improves safety and reduced inspection and maintenance costs. Included are the latest developments in robotic and drone technologies for non-destructive testing, case studies and best practices for data collection and processing.

Chris Adams

Name: Christopher Adams

Title: Senior Programs Manager

Organization: Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing (ARM) Institute

Presentation Title: ARM Institute Overview and Autonomous Swarm Inspection and Interactive 3D Modelling with Orchestrated Visualization (ASIIMOV) Project Brief

Summary: As the Nation's Leading Robotics and AI Manufacturing Innovation Institute, the ARM Institute is leading the way to a future where people and robots work together to respond to our nation's greatest challenges, and to develop and produce the world's most desired products. The presentation on the ASIIMOV project will summarize a 13 month project with Siemens Technology and Allem Business Ventures to develop a fully autonomous swarm drone system for large structure inspections. The brief will provide background on previous inspection methods, a summary of project developments/deliverables, a video demonstration of the system capabilities, and future plans for the technology.

Zac Franczyk

Name: Zac Franczyk

Title: Tooling Development Manager

Organization: Siemens Energy

Presentation Title: Autonomous Multi Tool Head Robotic Solution for Surface Preparation Project Brief

Summary: This presentation will summarize the efforts by Siemens Technology, Siemens Energy and Georgia Tech over their 12 month project to develop a multi-tool head robot for on-site automated high precision surface preparation (milling, polishing and grinding), capable of fast field deployment and positioning. This culminated in a final demonstration of the technology on a lower-half turbine casing at a Siemens Energy facility. The brief will provide background on previous inspection methods, a summary of project developments/deliverables, a video demonstration of the system capabilities, and future plans for the technology.


Description: Many nuclear power plants are experiencing a "new lease on life" with carbon free nuclear produced electricity filling the production gap as much of the world transitions from coal, oil, and natural gas produced power to renewables in the on-going effort to curtail global greenhouse gases. One part of this renaissance is focused on preserving the existing fleet of nuclear plants which produce about 20% of the electricity in the United States.

Through financial incentives and funding being provided at both the state and federal level, many nuclear plants are taking steps to extend their operating licenses, uprate their steam production and subsequent electrical output, and correspondingly modify and upgrade their equipment, such as the steam turbine-generator and auxiliaries to operate seamlessly for up to an additional 40 years beyond their original operating licenses.

This panel discussion will include industry experts to discuss the current issues relating to nuclear plant thermal uprates and equipment upgrades that are needed to support the additional steam production. Uprate steps include nuclear steam supply system thermal uprates, analyses, and equipment changes, steam turbine generator engineering studies and typical modifications, as well as the impacts to the balance of plant components.

Each panelist will give a presentation on their area of expertise followed by a question and answer period with the session attendees.

Description: Experts involved in bringing increased use of green hydrogen to power generation will discuss options for upgrades to gas turbine systems, along with piping requirements and green hydrogen production technologies available now.

Jeff Benoit

Jeff Benoit

Power Systems Mfg., LLC (PSM)

Jeff Benoit is the Vice President of Clean Energy Solutions for US-based Power Systems Mfg., LLC, known widely in the industry as PSM. Jeff is responsible for identifying and delivering new business opportunities leveraging PSM’s proven and commercially operating "HyFlex™" high-hydrogen combustion system platforms, designed to be retrofitted into the installed fleet of OEM gas turbines, with the immediate goal of future-proofing their customer’s assets for participation in the carbon-neutral power portfolio.

He joined PSM to lead their growing Combustion R&D Product & Engineering team in 2001, after a 16-year career at GE across a number of their power application businesses. While at PSM, he has held senior leadership roles in Product Management, Product Marketing, Strategy and Business Development.

Jeff, a holder of four US Patents and numerous ASME publications, obtained his BS in Mechanical Engineering from Clarkson University and a MS in Mechanical Engineering from MIT.

Inanc Senocak

Inanc Senocak

Associate Professor
University of Pittsburgh

Presentation Title: Computational Technologies for Wind Power Forecasting and Dynamic Powerline Rating

Summary: The interest to increase the amount of electricity produced from wind energy resources continues to grow. Due to the adverse effects of wind's natural variability, short-term power forecasting is viewed as an essential capability for grid integration of wind energy. Information about wind speed and its direction and turbulence levels are important for reliable and profitable operation of both on-shore and off-shore wind farms. For this information to be useful for grid integration, it needs to be forecast accurately at fine temporal and spatial resolutions. These expectations are beyond the capability of current weather forecasting models. Therefore, microscale wind prediction and forecasting models have been developed. This presentation will describe the current state in this area and underlying computational technologies in microscale wind prediction model. Additionally, the use of microscale wind prediction models in increasing the transmission capacity of powerlines will be explained.

Eric Grol

Eric Grol

Energy Systems Analyst
National Energy Technology Laboratory

Presentation Title: Perspectives on an Engineering Career in the Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management at the U.S. Department of Energy

Summary: This presentation will summarize professional experiences working at a government R&D laboratory. The discussion will cover such diverse topics as how engineering analysis supports in-house research and program direction, typical assignments and work products, and challenges/opportunities related to a government engineering career. Finally, general perspectives on transitioning into the professional workforce will be offered.

Description: The Power conference will offer several informal discussions on topics important to the power industry led by a Moderator/Leader. Each Roundtable will be organized into two 25-minute discussions during the scheduled hour, which will provide the audience the opportunity to participate in a couple of different discussions. You are encouraged to spend time with multiple topics. The Roundtable topics include:

  • Heat Rate  with experts on hand to discuss all things heat rate, including new efficiency regulations and standards being developed to help plants plan for and execute long term / annual heat rate analysis programs.
    • Moderator: Frank Michell

  • Cybersecurity – including professionals at the table with information on the different levels of security needed within power plant digital systems, and how to address potential areas of concern.
    • Moderator: Tina Toburen

  • Diversity in Power – an open discussion on how to develop, encourage and support personnel diversity within the power industry, including some voices from successful women working in the industry.
    • Moderator: Sarvenaz Sobhansarbandi, Ph.D.

  • Early Career Development – an open discussion on available career pathways within power, resources ASME can provide, education and licensing options, and how best to position yourself to move along your chosen path and attain your professional goals.
    • Moderator: Andre Texiera