Gas Turbine Test Cells/Test Stands
Gas turbine engines, when operated at test cells and test stands, emit air contaminants including oxides of nitrogen, carbon monoxide, volatile organic compounds, oxides of sulfur, particulate matter and toxic air contaminants. Test cells where engines with output power ratings of 0.3 MW or greater and heat input of 1 million BTU per hour or greater require a permit to operate.
Test cells/stands may be used to test stationary gas turbines or components or engines used in aircraft such as military jets. For permitting station gas turbine engines that are not test cells or test stands, please see the gas turbine engine page for permitting information.
The information on this page will assist in the completion and submittal of an application for each gas turbine. Each section of the page contains important information needed to submit an application.
The District collects information about equipment and processes that are required to have a permit by asking for completion of application forms. These forms tell us about your operation and allow us to permit your process. It is very important that these forms are filled out completely and accurately. Errors and missing information may lead to delayed processing time and additional charges if revisions are required. Please carefully review and complete the forms. You may contact the District with any questions.
-Plot Plan including stack location and nearby building dimensions
-Manufacturer emission data including startup and shutdown emission estimates
-Engine specifications/data sheets including information for different expected loads/operating scenarios
-Control equipment specifications (if applicable)
-BACT analysis including manufacturer/supplier cost estimates (if applicable)
-Actual emissions from existing facility (for major sources)
The general and equipment specific application forms along with
required attachments must be submitted with each application
The correct fee must be submitted with your application in order for it to be accepted. For this type of equipment, fees are determined based on the time and materials required to conduct the review, so a fee estimate must be obtained from the District prior to submittal. Please note that application fees are estimated and the final fee may be more or less than this amount based on time and materials spent processing the application. The District maintains work records for this purpose.
Before submitting an application, contact the District (see bottom of page) to obtain an application fee estimate for application submittal. Please note that an additional fee may also apply depending on the method of payment. A breakdown of how the application fee(s) are determined can be seen here. Additional information can be found in District Rule 40.
These fees may be paid by check payable to "Air Pollution Control District" or by credit card (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express).
If you choose to email or fax your application and intend on paying with a credit card, you must provide contact information (name and phone number) so that the District can complete payment.
Please note that credit card payments are assessed a transaction fee of 2.19% that is charged by the credit card provider.
If a piece of equipment or a process emits more than 10 pounds per
day of particulate matter (PM10), oxides of nitrogen (NOx),
volatile organic compounds (VOC) or oxides of sulfur (SOx), the
application must include a best available control technology (BACT)
analysis. Gas turbine engine test cells often trigger BACT
requirements for any or all of these pollutants. The District has a BACT
guide to assist with the analysis. If you have questions or need
assistance reference the contact information at the bottom of this
page. Please review District Rules 20.1, 20.2 and 20.3.
District Rule 1200 applies to any new, relocated, or modified emission unit which may increase emissions of one or more toxic air contaminant(s). The proposed project must comply with Rule 1200. Proposed equipment may require toxics best available control technology (TBACT) depending on the project. Please review District Rule 1200 for further details.
District rules address how information that is submitted to the District is managed. District Regulation IX contains District rules 176 and 177. Please refer directly to these rules when submitting trade secret information. However, be aware that you will need to submit:
1. You must indicate on the general application form that your submittal includes trade secret information to ensure that it is not inadvertently made publicly available.
2. A letter disclosing the proprietary information. Ideally, this information should be separated from your application and clearly identifiable. This can be submitted electronically, and can be a separate submittal from the main application package.
3. A letter for the public record explaining why the information needs to be held as trade secret or is otherwise exempt from disclosure.
Applications submitted with incomplete material composition data due to failure to include proprietary information can significantly delay permit applications. In an effort to expedite the permit application process it is recommended that you contact the manufacturer or vendor of any proprietary materials that are used in the process and prepare the required letters as part of your application submittal.
In 1989, the California state legislature passed a law, AB 3205, designed to protect schoolchildren from hazardous air contaminants. The law, as currently written, requires the District to notify parents of schoolchildren, neighboring businesses and residents of all new or modified equipment that emits any hazardous air contaminant into the air which will be installed within 1,000 feet of a school site. The law also requires the District to consider any comments before authorizing construction. Please review your proposed location. If a school property boundary is located within 1,000 feet of the proposed emissions point, the AB3205 process will be initiated. This process requires a 30 day public comment period and the overall process will delay projects by at least six weeks.
10124 Old Grove Rd
San Diego, CA 92131-1649
Select equipment type applications can now be submitted online through Citizen Access. Sign up today to get connected to your applications and permits.
The District will act on
complete applications as soon as possible but at most
within 180 days. The engineer assigned to your application will review
it and contact you within 30 days of receipt to confirm that it is
complete or request additional information. Typically permits are
issued in about 60 days. More complex processes will take longer.
Common reasons that IC engine applications may take longer than 60
days to evaluate include: if they require a mandatory public notice
period due to being installed within 1000 feet of a school or
triggering the requirement for a air quality impact analysis (AQIA),
if they do not initially pass a health risk assessment (HRA) or AQIA
or if BACT is not proposed or complete BACT analysis is not
Ensuring your application is complete is the best way to reduce processing time. Complete emissions data is the most important factor in minimizing application processing time and iterative information requests. If you have any questions about what information is required, please contact the District using the information at the bottom of this page. Learn more about the rules that govern application processing time.
Sign up for Citizen Access to get up to date information on the status of your application.
Learn more about the application process and what to expect.
There are no equipment specific rules that apply to gas turbine engines when operated at a test cell/stand. A complete listing of the District's rules can be found here.
Equipment Calculation Procedures - This page contains procedures
that should be used to calculate emissions from each gas turbine. The
correct calculation procedure should be selected based on fuel type,
boiler size and emission control technology.
Use of these calculation procedures will aid in minimizing
application review time and costs. The calculation procedure can be
found at the link at the top of each page, and the correct emission
factors selected from the list based on equipment. If available,
manufacturer provided equipment specific emission data or source
test results should be utilized before using default emission
factors. Sources of all emission data used must be included as
attachments to the application.
AP-42 - An alternative compilation of emission factors and calculation procedures prepared by the EPA that may be utilized by the District in some situations for some equipment types.