Combined with three-dimensional parameterization method of exhaust diffuser profile, aerodynamic performance evaluation method, response surface approximation evaluation model and Hooke-Jeeves direct search approach, aerodynamic optimization design of exhaust hood diffuser for steam turbine is presented. The aerodynamic performance of exhaust hood design candidate is evaluated using three-dimensional Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) solutions. Aerodynamic optimization design of exhaust hood is conducted for the maximum of the static pressure recovery coefficient of exhaust hood. The design variables are specified by the exhaust diffuser profile parameterization method. The aerodynamic performance of the optimized exhaust hood and referenced design is numerically calibrated with consideration of the full last stage and rotor tip clearance. The static pressure recovery coefficient of the optimized exhaust hood is higher than that of the referenced design with consideration of the upstream last stage influence. Furthermore, the detailed flow pattern of the optimized exhaust hood and referenced design is also analyzed and compared.

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