In this paper detailed experimental measurements and computational predictions of heat transfer coefficient distributions in a large scale perspex model of a novel integrally cast blade cooling geometry are reported. In a gas turbine blade, the cooling passage investigated is integrally cast into the blade wall, providing good thermal contact with the outer surface of the turbine blade. Flow enters the racetrack passage through the root of the blade and exits to a central plenum through a series of nineteen transfer holes equally spaced in a staggered arrangement across the span of the blade. The Reynolds number changes continuously along the passage length because of the continuous ejection of fluid through a series of 19 transfer holes to the plenum. The smooth passage surface opposite is in closest proximity to the external surface, and this investigation has characterised the heat transfer coefficient on this surface at a range of engine representative inlet Reynolds numbers using a hybrid transient liquid crystal technique. The ability of three different rib configurations to enhance the heat transfer on this surface was also determined. Because the passage at engine scale is necessarily small, the rib height in all cases was 32.5% of the passage height. As the entire passage wetted surface is able to contribute to the blade cooling, and knowledge of the heat transfer coefficient distribution on the holed surfaces is crucial to prediction of blade life, a commercial CFD package, Fluent, was used to predict the heat transfer coefficient distributions on the holed surface, where there was no optical access during these tests. This also allowed investigation of additional rib configurations, and comparison of the pressure penalty associated with each design. The study showed that the turbulator configuration used allows the position and maximum level of heat transfer coefficient enhancement to be chosen by the engine designer. For the configurations tested heat transfer coefficient enhancement of up to 32% and 51% could be achieved on the holed surface and the ribbed surface respectively. For minimum additional pressure drop 45° ribs should be used.

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