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04/05/2004 ~ Keys Energy Services (KEYS) recently completed a major overhaul on the Combustion Turbine #1 (CT #1) Unit’s turbine and compressor rotor in order to improve its efficiency and reliability.

CT #1 was commissioned in 1975 and is KEYS’ largest generator, capable of producing 20 Megawatts (MW) of power. CT #1 produces 21 percent of KEYS’ 60 percent on-island, back-up generation policy that was established in 1995.

“This was a routine, to-be expected, maintenance procedure on a unit under the stress of the humid weather afforded by the Florida Keys,” said KEYS general manager Carl Jansen.

The overhaul lasted 10 weeks, cost $590,000, and involved KEYS Generation employees and contractors. The rotor was removed from the unit and shipped to General Electric (GE) in Houston, Texas, where the GE shop installed new compressor blades, coated the compressor blades and wheels, and balanced the rotor assembly.

Typically, KEYS imports the areas’ power needs from mainland generators because they are more economical. A radial transmission line commonly known as the tieline brings power to the Florida Keys. Because this line can and does go down (i.e.: during hurricanes or severe storms) the Utility Board decided that maintaining local generation for emergency situations is paramount to ensure
reliability to KEYS’ customers.

If the tieline is inoperable for more than 30 minutes, KEYS crews fire up local generation, which includes CT #1, and supply up to 60 percent of the area’s peak power requirements. If customers exercise conservation measures, local generation can supply the power demand.

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