GE uses ORNL’s Titan to study combustion

combustionA simulation of combustion within two adjacent gas turbine combustors. (ORNL image)

General Electric has used Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Titan supercomputer — a Cray XK7 system capable of more than 20 million billion calculations per second — to simulate combustion and increase the efficiency of GE’s H class natural gas-powered turbines, which are reportedly the most efficient turbines of their kind.

“The predictive accuracy of GE’s new simulation methods is allowing the company to evaluate more combustor design concepts within the product cycle than ever before,” ORNL said in a news release. “Coupled with other aspects of gas turbine design gas turbine design, the projected result is a full percentage-point gasin in efficiency. Applying such efficiency gain across the U.S. combined-cycle fleet (approximately 200 gigawatts) would save about 3.5 million metric tons of carbon dioxide each year and more than $11 billion in fuel over the next 20 years.”

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About Frank Munger

Senior Writer Frank Munger covers the Dept. of Energy's Oak Ridge facilities and many related topics — nuclear weapons, nuclear waste and other things nuclear, environmental cleanup and science of all sorts. Atomic City Underground is, first and foremost, a news blog, but there's room for analysis, opinion and random thoughts that have no place else to go.