Top steam turbine manufacturers in USA – Steam turbines can be found everywhere in the world, and they’re used to power generators and produce electricity, as well as to provide propulsion for ships, planes, and missiles. They use pressure on spinning blades to transfer heat energy in the form of evaporated water into motion. Engineers have improved the steam turbine down to the millimeter and it is one of the most complex products to design and construct. Large steam turbines are only manufactured in a few areas across the world. In this post, we’ve compiled a list of the best steam turbine manufacturers in USA.
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The Basics of Steam Turbine
What Is a Steam Turbine?
A Steam Turbine is a machine that uses pressurized steam to extract thermal energy and convert it into mechanical work. The turbine is well suited to driving electrical generators since it generates rotating motion. Steam turbine engines create most of the electricity in the United States; according to the US Department of Energy, steam turbine generators in central power plants such as solar thermal electric, nuclear, and coal power plants produce more than 88 percent of the energy in the US.
A steam turbine gets its name from the fact that it is powered by steam. Steam expands and cools as it runs past the turbine’s spinning blades, releasing the most of the energy it contains. The blades are constantly spinning because of the steam power. As a result, the blades transform the majority of the potential energy in the steam into kinetic energy. After that, the turbine is utilized to power a generator, which generates electricity. Blades and rotors are the most fundamental components of steam turbines. The term “stage” refers to a collection of blades. They also have steam inlets and outputs (typically a set of nozzles).
Principle of Operation and Design
An ideal steam turbine is an isentropic process, or one with constant entropy, in which the entropy of the steam entering the turbine equals the entropy of the steam exiting it. No steam turbine, on the other hand, is completely isentropic, with typical isentropic efficiencies varying from 20% to 90% depending on the turbine’s application. Several sets of blades or buckets make up the interior of a turbine. The casing is attached to one set of stationary blades, while the shaft is connected to another set of moving blades. The sets are combined with specific minimum clearances, with the size and configuration of the sets shifting to maximize steam expansion at each stage.
Turbine size, load condition, gap losses, and friction losses all affect the thermal efficiency of a steam turbine. In a 1,200 MW (1,600,000 hp) turbine, they can reach peak efficiency of around 50%; smaller turbines have lower efficiency. The steam is expanded, doing work, in a number of steps to enhance turbine efficiency. These stages are classified as either impulse or reaction turbines based on how much energy is extracted from them. Most steam turbines combine reaction and impulse designs, with each stage acting as one or the other, but the overall turbine employing both. Lower pressure phases are typically reaction type, while higher pressure stages are impulse type.
Impulse Type of Steam Turbine
An impulse turbine features fixed nozzles that direct the steam flow into high-speed jets. These jets have a lot of kinetic energy, which the bucket-shaped rotor blades convert into shaft rotation as the steam jet changes direction. Only the stationary blades experience a pressure drop, resulting in a net increase in steam velocity over the stage. The pressure of the steam reduces as it passes through the nozzle, from the inlet pressure to the output pressure (atmospheric pressure or, more usually, the condenser vacuum). The steam leaves the nozzle at high velocity due to the high ratio of steam expansion. The steam leaving the rotating blades has a significant fraction of its maximum velocity as it leaves the nozzle.
Reaction Type of Steam Turbine
The rotor blades of the reaction turbine type are aligned to form convergent nozzles. The reaction force created as the steam accelerates through the nozzles formed by the rotor is used in this type of turbine. The fixed vanes of the stator direct steam onto the rotor. It exits the stator in a jet that fills the rotor’s whole diameter. The steam then reverses direction and picks up speed compared to the blades. With steam accelerating through the stator and decelerating through the rotor, a pressure drop appears across both the stator and the rotor, with no net change in steam velocity across the stage but a fall in both pressure and temperature, representing the work produced in the rotor drive.
Types of Steam Turbine
A steam turbine is a powerful turbo machine that uses thermal energy to generate mechanical energy. Based on the number of general flow, cylinders, heat supply, operating principle, and flow direction, all steam turbines can be categorized into different types. They can also be divided into categories based on exhaust circumstances, casting or shaft design, and drive type. However, as previously stated, there are two fundamental types of steam turbines: impulse and response. Similarly, there are five basic types of steam turbines based on exhaust conditions: condensing, non-condensing, automated extraction, mixed pressure, and regenerative extraction.
A) Types Based On Principle of Operation:
- Impulse turbine
- Reaction turbine
B) Types Based On Number of Cylinders:
- Single Cylinder Turbine
- Multi-Cylinder Turbines
C) Types Based On Means of Heat Supply
- Single Pressure Turbine
- Reheat Turbines
- Dual Pressure Turbine
D) Types Based On Direction of Steam Flow
- Axial Flow Turbine
- Radial Flow Turbine
- Tangential Flow Turbine
E) Types Based On Exhaust Condition
- Condensing Turbine
- Non Condensing Turbine
Operation and Maintenance
After first rotating the turbine by the turning gear, allowing time for the rotor to assume a straight plane (no bowing), then the turning gear is disengaged and steam is admitted to the turbine, first to the astern blades then to the ahead blades slowly rotating the turbine at 10–15 RPM (0.17–0.25 Hz) to slowly warm the turbine. The warm-up procedure for large steam turbines may exceed ten hours.
Rotor imbalance can create vibration during normal operation, which, due to the high rotation velocities, could result in a blade breaking away from the rotor and passing through the casing. To mitigate this risk, significant effort is invested into balancing the turbine. Turbines are also powered by high-quality steam, which is either superheated (dry) or saturated with a high dryness fraction. This protects the blades from being blasted with condensed water which causes rapid impingement and degradation (moisture carry over). Liquid water entering the blades may also damage the turbine shaft’s thrust bearings. Condensate drains are placed in the steam piping leading to the turbine to prevent this, in addition to controls and baffles in the boilers to assure high-quality steam.
Top Steam Turbine Manufacturer in the USA in 2023
The table below lists some of the top Steam Turbine Manufacturer in the USA, as well as their yearly sales. Further information about each business’s headquarters location, as well as the number of workers and descriptions of corporate operations, are given in what follows.
Table 1: Top Steam Turbine Manufacturer in the USA in 2023
|No. of Employees
|Bradken, Inc. (Engineered Products Business)
|Kansas City, MO
|$250 Mil. and over
|Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America, Inc.
|New York, NY
|$250 Mil. and over
|Industrial Boilers America.
|$250 Mil. and over
|$50 - 99.9 Mil
|$50 - 99.9 Mil
|Fincantieri Marine Systems North America, Inc.
|$250 Mil. and over
|$250 Mil. and over
|General Electric Co.
|$250 Mil. and over
|LAI East/Laser Applications, Inc., Div. of LAI International, Inc.
|$250 Mil. and over
|$10 - 24.9 Mil
Top Steam Turbine Manufacturer in the USA in 2023 Summaries
Top 10 Steam Turbine Manufacturers in USA include:
- Bradken, Inc. (Engineered Products Business)
- Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America, Inc.
- Industrial Boilers America
- ICM, Inc.
- Faircast Inc.
- Fincantieri Marine Systems North America, Inc.
- Siemens Corporation
- General Electric Co.
- LAI East/Laser Applications, Inc., Div. of LAI International, Inc.
- Barber-Nichols, Inc.
Bradken, Inc. (Engineered Products Business)
Bradken is a global metal casting and foundry company that specializes in custom-designed iron and steel parts and equipment. This company provides customized products such as ground engaging tools (GET), crawler shoes, mill liners, crusher liners, wear solutions, and monitoring systems to the world’s largest mining companies. They also offer specialized structural and industrial casting services in various alloys, with casting capacities ranging from 500 grams to over 25 tons. Bradken has foundries and workshops throughout the world and sales and service teams. In Australia, the United States, India, Indonesia, New Zealand, Canada, Malaysia, South Africa, China, and South America, they employ over 3,000 employees in 20 production sites and 40 sales and service centers. They also provide custom turbine manufacturing, including steam turbines. Process equipment, power generation, hydro, military, mining, construction & industrial machinery, shipbuilding & transportation are all applications for steam turbines.
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America, Inc.
At their long-time approved Mitsubishi Service Center, Intercontinental Jet Service Corp. in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America, Inc. supports aircraft and aerospace projects, including the MU-2 and MU-300. Furthermore, the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America Corrugating Machinery Division provides leading edge equipment systems, sales, parts, technical, and field support to the growing, dynamic packaging industry, making it one of the most respected suppliers to converters in North and Central America. Their proprietary post-combustion capture systems enable industrial plants and power plants to capture and retain up to 90% of CO2 emissions, putting them at the forefront of green technology adoption. It’s how they contribute to a better world.
The Tire Machinery Division of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America, Inc. (MHIA) has been located in the United States since 1991, and they have been producing and assembling tire industry equipment in Northeast Ohio since 1993. MHIA collaborates with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (Japan) and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Machinery Technology Corporation to provide the tire industry with a wide range of world-class designs, engineering, and equipment. The Transportation Systems Division of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America, Inc. is responsible for the design, development, supply, engineering, marketing, and installation of innovative transit systems for the global market. Their wide product portfolio includes rail transit, maglev, monorail, and short-haul transportation systems, all of which may be tailored for nearly any application in addition to their world-class Automated People Mover (APM) systems.’
Industrial Boilers America
Industrial Boilers America, as one of the best boiler manufacturers in the United States, is leading the path to zero waste by supplying excellent boiler and power plant parts that enable its clients to have a bigger influence on the communities and governments they serve. Industrial Boilers America is a leader in the production, licensing, and deployment of Industrial Power plants, as well as all the necessary parts and equipment. They collaborate with other community and government leaders to build long-term relationships that produce sustainable energy, jobs, and social responsibility. Their belief that sustainability should be based on improving the environment rather than profit allows them to deliver services that allow their partners to reinvest in themselves, resulting in a sustainable community.
ICM, Inc. is a company that manufactures and services industrial equipment and technologies. Rotary and steam tube dryers, turbines, bio-methanators, ethanol recovery, base tricanter and oil separation systems, and gasification technology services are all available from the company. The people of ICM have made the company an industry leader in engineering, building, and supporting ethanol facilities around the world, with an unequaled enthusiasm and commitment to the global biofuels industry in an endeavor to maintain agriculture via innovation.
Faircast, Inc. is in the Foundries industry and is located in Fairfield, LA, United States. Faircast, Inc. is on its way to becoming the Midwest’s leading gray iron and ductile iron casting foundry. They can meet most of your ductile iron casting needs thanks to various molding lines and a committed workforce. They also produce custom steam turbines and turbine parts, as well as castings employing DISAMATIC molding techniques. Squeezer and rotolift stations are available at Faircast, Inc.
Fincantieri Marine Systems North America, Inc.
Fincantieri Marine Systems North America, Inc. (FMSNA) is a company of the Fincantieri Group of Italy, located in the United States. FMSNA provides products and services to the Department of Defense for homeland security and commercial purposes. FMSNA can provide sophisticated turnkey solutions that are ideally tailored to the needs of the client, as well as important after-sales service and logistic support. FMSNA has significant experience and competence in marrying propulsion and equipment systems to a ship’s hull form, ensuring that its clients receive the greatest quality and “best value.” FMSNA’s additional value comes from being system engineers who will supply a fully integrated package, as opposed to simply being a hardware vendor. As “the propulsion plant integrator,” FMSNA will assume complete responsibility for the machinery’s performance and will act as a single point of contact for all propulsion system difficulties.
Siemens is a global leader in power generation and distribution, intelligent infrastructure, and distributed energy systems, with a concentration on digitization, automation, and electrification for the process and manufacturing industries. The corporation has produced technology that benefits a variety of American industries, including manufacturing, energy, healthcare, and infrastructure, for over 160 years. Siemens Group USA earned $17 billion in revenue in fiscal 2020 and employs about 40,000 employees who serve customers in all 50 states and Puerto Rico.
General Electric Co.
General Electric Company (GE) is a multinational conglomerate headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, that was founded in New York State. Until 2021, the company operated in the aviation, power, renewable energy, digital industry, locomotives, weapons manufacturing, and venture capital and finance sectors, but it has since divested from several scopes, with the first four segments now accounting for the majority of the company’s operations.
According to the Fortune 500, GE was the 33rd largest company in the United States by gross revenue in 2020. GE was the 14th most profitable corporation in the Fortune 20 list in 2011, but its profitability has since declined significantly, and the company has underperformed the market by nearly 75%. Two GE employees have been awarded the Nobel Prize: Irving Langmuir (1932) and Ivar Giaever (1932). (1973).
The corporation announced its plan to split into three public entities on November 9, 2021. Healthcare, aviation and energy (renewable energy, power, and digital) will be the emphasis of the new companies. The healthcare division’s first spinoff is planned for 2023, with the energy division’s spinoff scheduled for 2024.
LAI East/Laser Applications, Inc., Div. of LAI International, Inc.
LAI International has progressed from its beginnings as a regional contract manufacturer to its current position as an international leader in advanced manufacturing technology development. With a vision to provide better service and deliver outstanding quality in the company’s legacy of innovation, the management team has guided the company’s success and development.
LAI International remains an inventive provider of manufacturing technologies, designing tomorrow’s solutions today. LAI is the perfect partner for additive manufacturing of high-tech components for the aerospace, energy, and industrial sectors, and is widely regarded as the premier provider of highly-engineered, mission-critical components, thanks to the addition of the Q20 EBM in 2015 and the M400-4 Laser in 2018.
Barber-Nichols (BN) is headquartered in Arvada, Colorado, a Denver suburb. Bob Barber and Ken Nichols established the company in 1966. Compressors, fans, pumps, turbines, generators, motors, and controllers are among BN’s turbo machinery products, which are used in aerospace, cryogenic, defense, and energy applications. BN also offers engineering consultancy and contract production in addition to specialist hardware.
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This article has provided a collection of data and company descriptions for some of the most well-known steam turbine manufacturers in the United States, as well as a brief introduction of steam turbine basics. To learn more about these companies and to identify suppliers of additional industrial and commercial equipment, visit the Linquip website.
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