A novel isolation curtain to reduce turbine ingress heating and an advanced model for honeycomb labyrinth seals
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A combination of 3-D and 2-D computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modeling as well as experimental testing of the labyrinth seal with hexagonal honeycomb cells on the stator wall was performed. For the 3-D and 2-D CFD models, the hexagonal honeycomb structure was modeled using the concept of the baffle (zero-thickness wall) and the simplified 2-D fin, respectively. The 3-D model showed that even a small axial change of the tooth (or honeycomb wall) location, or a small circumferential change of the honeycomb wall location significantly affected the flow patterns and leakage characteristics especially for small tooth tip clearance. Also, the local details of the flow field were investigated. The seven basic procedural steps to develop a 2-D axisymmetric honeycomb labyrinth seal leakage model were shown. Clearly demonstrated for varying test conditions was the 2-D model capability to predict the 3-D honeycomb labyrinth flow that had been measured at different operating conditions from that used in developing the 2-D model. Specifically, the 2-D model showed very close agreement with measurements. In addition, the 2-D model greatly reduced the computer resource requirement needed to obtain a solution of the 3-D honeycomb labyrinth seal leakage. The novel and advanced strategy to reduce the turbine ingress heating, and thus the coolant requirement, by injecting a Âcoolant isolation curtainÂ was developed numerically using a 3-D CFD model. The coolant isolation curtain was applied under the nozzle guide vane platform for the forward cavity of a turbine stage. Specifically, the isolation curtain serves to isolate the hot mainstream gas from the turbine outer region. The effect of the geometry change, the outer cavity axial gap clearance, the circumferential location of the injection curtain slot and the injection fluid angle on the ingress heating was investigated. Adding the chamfer to the baseline design gave a similar or higher maximum temperature T* max than did the baseline design without chamfer, but implementation of the injection curtain slot reduced substantially T* max of the outer region. In addition, a more desirable uniform adiabatic wall temperature distribution along the outer rotor and stator surfaces was observed due to the presence of the isolation curtain.
Choi, Dong Chun (2005). A novel isolation curtain to reduce turbine ingress heating and an advanced model for honeycomb labyrinth seals. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Texas A&M University. Available electronically from