Research Papers

History of Short-Duration Measurement Programs Related to Gas Turbine Heat Transfer, Aerodynamics, and Aeroperformance at Calspan and The Ohio State University

[+] Author and Article Information
Michael Dunn

e-mail: dunn.129@osu.edu

Randall Mathison

e-mail: mathison.4@osu.edu
The Ohio State University
Gas Turbine Laboratory,
2300 West Case Road,
Columbus, OH 43245

Contributed by the International Gas Turbine Institute (IGTI) of ASME for publication in the Journal of Turbomachinery. Manuscript received April 19, 2013; final manuscript received May 31, 2013; published online September 26, 2013. Editor: Ronald Bunker.

J. Turbomach 136(4), 041004 (Sep 26, 2013) (11 pages) Paper No: TURBO-13-1058; doi: 10.1115/1.4024898 History: Received April 19, 2013; Revised May 31, 2013

Short-duration facilities have been used for the past 35 years to obtain measurements of heat transfer, aerodynamic loading, vibratory response, film-cooling influence, purge flow migration, and aeroperformance for full-stage, high-pressure turbines operating at design-corrected conditions of flow function, corrected speed, and stage pressure ratio. This paper traces the development of experimental techniques now in use at The Ohio State University (OSU) Gas Turbine Laboratory (GTL) from initial work in this area at the Cornell Aeronautical Laboratory (CAL, later to become Calspan) from 1975 through to the present. It is intended to summarize the wide range of research that can be performed with a short-duration facility and highlight the types of measurements that are possible. Beginning with heat flux measurements for the vane and blade of a Garrett TFE 731-2 HP turbine stage with vane pressure-surface slot cooling, the challenge of each experimental program has been to provide data to aid turbine designers in understanding the relevant flow physics and help drive the advancement of predictive techniques. Through many different programs, this has involved collaborators at a variety of companies and experiments performed with turbine stages from Garrett, Allison, Teledyne, Pratt and Whitney (P/W), General Electric Aviation (GEA), Rocketdyne, Westinghouse, and Honeywell. The vane/blade interaction measurement and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) program, which ran from the early 1980s until 2000, provided a particularly good example of what can be achieved when experimentalists and computational specialists collaborate closely. Before conclusion of this program in 2000, the heat flux and pressure measurements made for this transonic turbine operated with and without vane trailing edge cooling flow were analyzed and compared to predictive codes in conjunction with engineers at Allison, United Technologies Research Center (UTRC), P/W, and GEA in jointly published papers. When the group moved to OSU in 1995 along with the facility used at Calspan, refined techniques were needed to meet new research challenges, such as investigating blade-damping and forced response, measuring aeroperformance for different configurations, and preparing for advanced cooling experiments that introduced complicating features of an actual engine to further challenge computational predictions. This required conversion of the test-gas heating method from a shock-tunnel approach to a blowdown approach using a combustor emulator to also create inlet temperature profiles, the development of instrumentation techniques to work with a thin-walled airfoil with backside cooling, and the adoption of experimental techniques that could be used to successfully operate fully cooled turbine stages (vane row-cooled, blade row-cooled, and proper cavity purge flow provided). Further, it was necessary to develop techniques for measuring the aeroperformance of these fully cooled machines.

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Fig. 1

Sketch of turbine stage housed in facility

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Fig. 2

Typical turbine cooling paths

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Fig. 3

Measured versus predicted Stanton number for high-pressure turbine blade

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Fig. 4

Measured and predicted surface pressure (a) time history and (b) frequency content for the blade at 50% span and 6% wetted distance on suction surface

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Fig. 5

Turbine stage and associated housing

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Fig. 6

Cooled vane used for GE turbine stage (not to scale)

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Fig. 7

Instantaneous radial velocity contours on the purge flow cavity and main gas path interface

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Fig. 8

Influence of tip gap on work extraction and efficiency




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