Abstract

This paper investigates the effects of implementing Heat Pipe Turbine Vane (HPTV) cooling in the NASA N+3 engine. The HPTV can be thought of as a heat pipe in the shape of a turbine vane, functioning as both an aerodynamic body and heat exchanger. The heat-absorbing section of the HPTV remains fixed in the vanes of the high-pressure turbine (HPT), while the heat-rejecting section can be placed in any stage of the low pressure turbine (LPT) as well as the bypass stream. The optimal location of the condensing (heat-rejecting) section is shown to be in the bypass stream for both HPT stages. The thrust-specific fuel consumption (TSFC) increased by 0.2%, which is mainly attributed to the elimination of air cooling in the second stage HPT vanes combined with the transfer of energy from the main gas path to elsewhere in the cycle. Air cooling is also eliminated in the first stage HPT vanes, but this cooling air is nonchargeable. A preliminary design is proposed and shown to demonstrate the desired performance and operates below the heat flux limitations of the heat pipe.

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