The demand of a further increased bypass ratio of aero engines will lead to low pressure turbines with larger diameters which rotate at lower speed. Therefore, it is necessary to guide the flow leaving the high pressure turbine to the low pressure turbine at a larger diameter without any loss generating separation or flow disturbances. Due to costs and weight this intermediate turbine duct has to be as short as possible. This leads to an aggressive (high diffusion) S-shaped duct geometry. In order to investigate the influence of the blade tip gap height of a preceding rotor on such a high-diffusion duct flow a detailed measurement campaign in the Transonic Test Turbine Facility at Graz University of Technology has been performed. A high diffusion intermediate duct is arranged downstream a high-pressure turbine stage providing an exit Mach number of about 0.6 and a swirl angle of −15 degrees (counter swirl). A low-pressure vane row is located at the end of the duct and represents the counter rotating low pressure turbine at larger diameter. At the ASME 2007, results of these investigations were presented for two different tip gap heights of 1.5% span (0.8 mm) and 2.4% span (1.3 mm). In order to better understand the flow phenomena observed in the intermediate duct a detailed numerical study is conducted. The unsteady flow through the whole configuration is simulated for both gap heights as well as for a rotor with zero gap height. The unsteady data are compared at the stage exit and inside the duct to study the flow physics. The calculation of the zero gap height configuration allows to determine the influence of the tip leakage flow of the preceding rotor on the intermediate turbine duct. It turns out that for this aggressive duct the tip leakage flow has a very positive effect on the pressure recovery.

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