A 1-MW wellhead generator was tested in 1980, 1981, and 1982 by Mexico, Italy, and New Zealand at Cerro Prieto, Cesano, and Broadlands, respectively. The total flow helical screw expander portable power plant, Model 76-1, had been built for the U.S. Government and field-tested in Utah, USA, in 1978 and 1979. The expander had oversized internal clearances designed for self-cleaning operation on fluids that deposit adherent scale normally detrimental to the utiliation of liquid dominated fields. Conditions with which the expander was tested included inlet pressures of 64 to 220 psia, inlet qualities of 0% to 100%, exhaust pressures of 3.1 to 40 psia, electrial loads of idle and 110 to 933 kW, electrical frequencies of 50 and 60 Hz, male rotor speeds of 2500 to 4000 rpm, and fluid characteristics to 310,000 ppm total dissolved solids and noncondensables to 38 wt % of the vapor. Some testing was done on-grid. Typical expander isentropic efficiency was 40% to 50% with the clearances not closed, and 5 percentage points or more higher with the clearances partly closed. The expander efficiency increased approximately logarithmically with shaft power for most operations, while inlet quality, speed, and pressure ratio across the machine had only small effects. These findings are all in agreement with the Utah test results.
ENERGY PRODUCTION AND CONVERSION