Gas turbine blade tips encounter large heat load as they are exposed to the high temperature gas. A common way to cool the blade and its tip is to design serpentine passages with 180-deg turns under the blade tip-cap inside the turbine blade. Improved internal convective cooling is therefore required to increase the blade tip life time. This paper presents numerical predictions of turbulent fluid flow and heat transfer through two-pass channels with and without guide vanes placed in the turn regions using RANS turbulence modeling. The effects of adding guide vanes on the tip-wall heat transfer enhancement and the channel pressure loss were analyzed. The guide vanes have a height identical to that of the channel. The inlet Reynolds numbers are ranging from 100,000 to 600,000. The detailed three-dimensional fluid flow and heat transfer over the tip-walls are presented. The overall performances of several two-pass channels are also evaluated and compared. It is found that the tip heat transfer coefficients of the channels with guide vanes are 10∼60% higher than that of a channel without guide vanes, while the pressure loss might be reduced when the guide vanes are properly designed and located, otherwise the pressure loss is expected to be increased severely. It is suggested that the usage of proper guide vanes is a suitable way to augment the blade tip heat transfer and improve the flow structure, but is not the most effective way compared to the augmentation by surface modifications imposed on the tip-wall directly.

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