Effect of Endwall Fluid Injection on Passage Vortex formation in a First Stage Nozzle Guide Vane Passage

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Virginia Tech


The growing need for increased performance from gas turbines has fueled the drive to raise turbine inlet temperatures. This results in high thermal stresses especially along the first stage nozzle guide vane cascade as the hot combustion products exiting modern day gas turbine combustors generally reach temperatures that could endanger the structural stability of these vanes and greatly reduce the vane life. The highest heat transfer coefficients in the vane passage occurs near the endwall, particularly in the leading edge-endwall junction where vortical flows cause the flow of hotter fluid in the mainstream to mix with relatively lower temperature boundary layer fluid. This work documents the computational investigation of air injection at the end wall through a cylindrical hole placed upstream of the nozzle guide vane leading edge-end wall junction. The effect of the secondary jet on the formation of the leading edge horseshoe vortex and the consequent formation of the passage vortex has been studied. For the computations, the Reynolds averaged Navier–Stokes (RANS) equations were solved with the commercial software ANSYS Fluent using the SST k-ω model. Total pressure loss coefficient and kinetic energy loss Coefficient contour plots at the exit of the cascade to estimate the effect of the endwall fluid injection on loss profiles at the vane cascade exit. Swirling strength contours were plotted at several axial chord locations in order to track the path of the passage vortex in and downstream of the vane cascade. Two different hole-positions (located at 1 hole diameter and 2 hole diameters from the leading edge) along a plane parallel to the incident flow were considered in order to study the effect of the hole position with respect to the vane leading edge-endwall junction. Three different streamwise hole inclination angles with respect to the mainstream flow direction were studied to identify the best angle for the injection of fluid through the endwall. This angle was combined with five different compound angles (0°, 30°, 45°, 60° and 90°) in order to study the effect of varying the compound angle on the leading edge vortex and the passage vortex. Each of the above studies were conducted at two different injected fluid-to-mainstream mass flow ratios (0.5% and 1%) in order to study the effect of varying injected flow rate on the formation of the leading edge vortex and the vane passage vortex. From the results it was observed that suitable selection of the secondary injection mass flow rate, injection angle and hole-position caused an absence of the leading edge horseshoe vortex and delayed migration of the passage vortex across the guide vane passage. Heat Transfer studies were also conducted to observe the absence/weakening of the leading edge vortex and the delayed pitch-wise movement of the passage vortex.



Computational fluid dynamics, Gas Turbines, Passage Vortex, Endwall Flow, Fluid Injection