No Apologies

Published on: 
Turbomachinery Magazine, March/April 2021,

Cover image for our March/April 2021 issue.[/caption]

Perhaps it’s a sign that good times lie ahead. Suddenly, a series of virtual shows took place around the world. Though far from an adequate replacement for the real thing, they at least were well produced, well attended, and outlined a positive future for the industry.

The Baker Hughes Annual Meeting (AM) began with fighting talk from the company CEO about the future. “Renewables will not scale fast enough to displace energy demand in the coming years so we must learn to consume hydrocarbons in a better way,” said Lorenzo Simonelli. “Natural gas should serve as both a transition and a destination fuel; its efficiency is compelling.”

Bob Dudley, Chair of the Oil & Gas Climate Initiative and former CEO of BP, agrees. He sees no credible scenario for an energy future without natural gas.

And then came the Russians to ramp up the rhetoric. “Overly ambitious emissions goals foster regulations that are pushing immature solutions and exclude technologies that are efficient,” said Elena Burmistrova of Gazprom.

Mark Gyetvay of Novatek called for oil & gas to unite as one voice to combat misinformation. “Let’s not be apologetic about our industry as we are lifting millions out of poverty.”

You can read what they and other oil & gas executives had to say in our report on the AM. Additionally, that article includes plenty of news about liquefied natural gas (LNG), carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS), and hydrogen generation, as well as an exclusive interview with Rod Christie, President and CEO, Turbomachinery and Process Solutions at Baker Hughes. When pressed about the reality of actual hydrogen turbomachinery sales, he said such projects will happen with greater frequency over the next two or three years. But they will be limited to specific applications and geographies.

Transmission Woes


The new issue also contains a report on the Asia Turbomachinery & Pump Symposium (ATPS) as well as one from CERAweek in Texas. With the February 2021 large-scale blackouts in Texas, that show largely focused on those grid disruptions, their causes, and various remedies. You can read about that in our CERAweek show report, as well as in a feature on the Texas grid.

As it happened, we have been working on a special report on the U.S. transmission grid for many months. Our feature explains the architecture of the grid, its shortcomings, and how turbomachinery can help shore it up. It’s a shame that so much stimulus money doled out by either administration has failed to comprehensively address crumbling road networks and a rickety grid. Both would directly contribute to a rapid recovery from the events of the past year.

“Just as the Eisenhower interstate highway system unleashed U.S. manufacturing in the 20th Century, a strong macro grid will deliver massive economic and public health benefits for all Americans in the 21st Century,” said Rob Gramlich, Executive Director of Americans for a Clean Energy Grid.

Maintenance & Repair

Our cover story showcases the talents and services of the turbomachinery aftermarket. This industry is rich in resources to troubleshoot any kind of turbine, compressor, or auxiliary equipment. Whether through inspection, monitoring, repairs, or upgrades, an army of maintenance & repair professionals keep the show on the road. As well as traditional services, our cover feature includes trends such as greater use of remote monitoring and deployment of drones for inspection.

What else do we have? An article on hot gas path upgrades, a vendor spotlight on Chentronics featuring its ignition and flame detection technology, a Q and A with Sohre about shaft currents and electric discharge, a Myth Busters column on the accuracy of testing, a Turbo Tips review of turbomachinery failures, and plenty of news and new products as usual.

Hoping to see you at a live event some time soon. ■