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Aerodynamics of a Low-Pressure Turbine Airfoil at Low-Reynolds Numbers: Part 1 — Steady Flow Measurements

[+] Author Affiliations
Ali Mahallati

National Research Council of Canada, Ottawa, ON, Canada

Brian R. McAuliffe, Steen A. Sjolander

Carleton University, Ottawa, ON, Canada

Thomas J. Praisner

Pratt & Whitney, East Hartford, CT

Paper No. GT2007-27347, pp. 1011-1023; 13 pages
  • ASME Turbo Expo 2007: Power for Land, Sea, and Air
  • Volume 4: Turbo Expo 2007, Parts A and B
  • Montreal, Canada, May 14–17, 2007
  • Conference Sponsors: International Gas Turbine Institute
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4793-4 | eISBN: 0-7918-3796-3
  • Copyright © 2007 by ASME


This two-part paper presents a detailed experimental investigation of the laminar separation and transition phenomena on the suction surface of a high-lift low-pressure (LP) turbine airfoil, PakB. The first part describes the influence of Reynolds number, freestream turbulence intensity and turbulence length scale on the PakB airfoil under steady inflow conditions. The present measurements are distinctive in that a closely-spaced array of hot-film sensors has allowed a very detailed examination to be made of both the steady and unsteady behaviour of the suction surface boundary layer. In addition, this paper presents a technique for interpreting the transition process in steady, and periodically unsteady, separated flows based on dynamic and statistical properties of the hot-film measurements. Measurements were made at Reynolds number varying from 25,000 to 150,000 and for freestream turbulence intensities of 0.4%, 2% and 4%. Two separate grids were used to generate turbulence intensity of 4% with integral length scales of about 10% and 40% of the airfoil axial chord length. The first is comparable with the turbulence length scales expected in the engine and the second is considerably larger. While the higher levels of freestream turbulence intensity promoted earlier transition and a shorter separation bubble, the varying turbulence length scale did not have a noticeable effect on the transition process. The size of the separation bubble increased with decreasing Reynolds number, and under low freestream turbulence levels the bubble failed to reattach at low Reynolds numbers. As expected, the losses increased with the length of the separation bubble on the suction side of the airfoil, and increased significantly when the bubble failed to reattach.

Copyright © 2007 by ASME



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