The U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Fossil Energy, through its Morgantown Energy Technology Center, has initiated a program for the application of less expensive fuels for use in gas turbines; the overall objective is to develop an environmentally sound integrated direct-fired, coal fueled gas turbine system which will produce cost-competitive energy. The fuel is coal and may be in several forms which include a micronized powder, a slurry (with water, methanol, etc.), or a minimally cleaned, coal-derived gas.

The application of coal fuels to gas turbines raises a number of technical questions, a principal one being the development of deposits within the turbine. Several programs have been initiated, that are aimed at development of an understanding of turbine deposition from coal fuels. Some of DOE’s research activities which are discussed within this paper include efforts in: (a) nozzle cascade tests utilizing advanced and conventional blade cooling to minimize deposition, (b) bench-scale combustion/deposition tests, (c) laboratory research aimed at defining particle stickiness, and (d) theoretical efforts to model gas stream nucleation of particles and the resulting deposition on blades cooled to various temperatures.

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