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Authors' Class Standing

Isheeta Ranade, Senior Jaime Gutierrez, Graduate Student Anish Prasad, Graduate Student Mark Ricklick, Faculty Mentor

Lead Presenter's Name

Isheeta Ranade

Faculty Mentor Name

Dr. Mark Ricklick

Abstract

The efficiency and power output of the gas turbine is impacted directly by the maximum gas temperature. Cooling technology has therefore played a major role in increasing engine performance. The implementation of this technology allows first stage turbines to produce inlet temperatures that are several hundred Kelvin beyond the melting point of the materials used within them. Effective cooling ensures the safety and the high efficiency of the gas turbine. The turbine blades are commonly cooled using internal cooling, which uses rib turbulators to enhance the rate of heat transfer. In the current study, a model consisting of a rectangular channel with a single parameterized rib geometry was optimized and investigated computationally. The resulting turbulator shapes were significantly different than what is typically found in the literature. Heat transfer enhancement rates of up to 53.6 were observed as compared to the baseline (47.3), with up to 3.3 Pa reduction in pressure drop. The best performing designs were selected on the basis of enhancement in heat transfer and lower pressure drop. These selected designs were 3-D printed and their performance experimentally validated. The tests validate the accuracy of the computational models as well as the feasibility for real world applications.

Did this research project receive funding support (Spark or Ignite Grants) from the Office of Undergraduate Research?

Yes

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Experimental Validation of Optimized Geometries for Cooling in Gas Turbine Blades

The efficiency and power output of the gas turbine is impacted directly by the maximum gas temperature. Cooling technology has therefore played a major role in increasing engine performance. The implementation of this technology allows first stage turbines to produce inlet temperatures that are several hundred Kelvin beyond the melting point of the materials used within them. Effective cooling ensures the safety and the high efficiency of the gas turbine. The turbine blades are commonly cooled using internal cooling, which uses rib turbulators to enhance the rate of heat transfer. In the current study, a model consisting of a rectangular channel with a single parameterized rib geometry was optimized and investigated computationally. The resulting turbulator shapes were significantly different than what is typically found in the literature. Heat transfer enhancement rates of up to 53.6 were observed as compared to the baseline (47.3), with up to 3.3 Pa reduction in pressure drop. The best performing designs were selected on the basis of enhancement in heat transfer and lower pressure drop. These selected designs were 3-D printed and their performance experimentally validated. The tests validate the accuracy of the computational models as well as the feasibility for real world applications.

 

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