Modern high pressure turbines operate at high velocity and high temperature conditions. The gap existing above a turbine rotor blade is responsible for an undesirable tip leakage flow. It is a source of high aerodynamic losses and high heat transfer rates. A better understanding of the tip flow behaviour is needed to provide a more efficient cooling design in this region. The objective of this paper is to investigate the tip leakage flow for a blade with two different squealer tips and film-cooling applied on the pressure side and through tip dust holes in a non-rotating, linear cascade arrangement. The experiments were performed in the VKI Light Piston Compression Tube facility, CT-2. The tip gap flow was investigated by oil flow visualisations and by wall static and total pressure measurements. Two geometries were tested — a full squealer and a partial suction side squealer. The measurements were performed in the blade tip region, including the squealer rim and on the corresponding end-wall for engine representative values of outlet Reynolds and Mach numbers. The main flow structures in the cavity were put in evidence. Positive influence of the coolant on the tip gap flow and on the aerodynamic losses was found for the full squealer tip case: increasing the coolant mass-flow increased the tip gap flow resistance. The flow through the clearance therefore slows down, the tip gap mass-flow and the heat transfer respectively decreases. No such effect of cooling was found in the case of the partial suction side squealer geometry. The absence of a pressure side squealer rim resulted in a totally different tip gap flow topology, indifferent to cooling. The influence of cooling on the overall mass-weighted thermodynamic loss coefficient, which takes into account the different energies of the mainstream and coolant flows was found marginal for both geometries. Finally the overall loss coefficient was found to be higher for the partial suction side squealer tip than for the full squealer tip.

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