Experimental Study of Gas Turbine Blade Film Cooling and Heat Transfer
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Modern gas turbine engines require higher turbine-entry gas temperature to improve their thermal efficiency and thereby their performance. A major accompanying concern is the heat-up of the turbine components which are already subject to high thermal and mechanical stresses. This heat-up can be reduced by: (i) applying thermal barrier coating (TBC) on the surface, and (ii) providing coolant to the surface by injecting secondary air discharged from the compressor. However, as the bleeding off of compressor discharge air exacts a penalty on engine performance, the cooling functions must be accomplished with the smallest possible secondary air injection. This necessitates a detailed and systematic study of the various flow and geometrical parameters that may have a bearing on the cooling pattern. In the present study, experiments were performed in three regions of a non-rotating gas turbine blade cascade: blade platform, blade span, and blade tip. The blade platform and blade span studies were carried out on a high pressure turbine rotor blade cascade in medium flow conditions. Film-cooling effectiveness or degree of cooling was assessed in terms of cooling hole geometry, blowing ratio, freestream turbulence, coolant-to-mainstream density ratio, purge flow rate, upstream vortex for blade platform cooling and blowing ratio, and upstream vortex for blade span cooling. The blade tip study was performed in a blow-down flow loop in a transonic flow environment. The degree of cooling was assessed in terms of blowing ratio and tip clearance. Limited heat transfer coefficient measurements were also carried out. Mainstream pressure loss was also measured for blade platform and blade tip film-cooling with the help of pitot-static probes. The pressure sensitive paint (PSP) and temperature sensitive paint (TSP) techniques were used for measuring film-cooling effectiveness whereas for heat transfer coefficient measurement, temperature sensitive paint (TSP) technique was employed. Results indicated that the blade platform cooling requires a combination of upstream purge flow and downstream discrete film-cooling holes to cool the entire platform. The shaped cooling holes provided wider film coverage and higher film-cooling effectiveness than the cylindrical holes while also creating lesser mainstream pressure losses. Higher coolant-to-mainstream density ratio resulted in higher effectiveness levels from the cooling holes. On the blade span, at any given blowing ratio, the suction side showed better coolant coverage than the pressure side even though the former had two fewer rows of holes. Film-cooling effectiveness increased with blowing ratio on both sides of the blade. Whereas the pressure side effectiveness continued to increase with blowing ratio, the increase in suction side effectiveness slowed down at higher blowing ratios (M=0.9 and 1.2). Upstream wake had a detrimental effect on film coverage. 0% and 25% wake phase positions significantly decreased film-cooling effectiveness magnitude. Comparison between the compound shaped hole and the compound cylindrical hole design showed higher effectiveness values for shaped holes on the suction side. The cylindrical holes performed marginally better in the curved portion of the pressure side. Finally, the concept tip proved to be better than the baseline tip in terms of reducing mainstream flow leakage and mainstream pressure loss. The film-cooling effectiveness on the concept blade increased with increasing blowing ratio and tip gap. However, the film-coverage on the leading tip portion was almost negligible.
Narzary, Diganta P. (2009). Experimental Study of Gas Turbine Blade Film Cooling and Heat Transfer. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from