In order to increase the performance of a modern gas turbine, compressors are required to provide higher pressure ratio and avoid incurring higher losses. The tandem aerofoil has the potential to achieve a higher blade loading in combination with lower losses compared to single vanes. The main reason for this is due to the fact that a new boundary layer is generated on the second blade surface and the turning can be achieved with smaller separation occurring. The lift split between the two vanes with respect to the overall turning is an important design choice.
In this paper an automated three-dimensional optimisation of a highly loaded compressor stator is presented. For optimisation a novel methodology based on the Multipoint Approximation Method (MAM) is used. MAM makes use of an automatic design of experiments, response surface modelling and a trust region to represent the design space. The CFD solutions are obtained with the high-fidelity 3D Navier-Stokes solver HYDRA. In order to increase the stage performance the 3D shape of the tandem vane is modified changing both the front and rear aerofoils. Moreover the relative location of the two aerofoils is controlled modifying the axial and tangential relative positions. It is shown that the novel optimisation methodology is able to cope with a large number of design parameters and produce designs which performs better than its single vane counterpart in terms of efficiency and numerical stall margin.
One of the key challenges in producing an automatic optimisation process has been the automatic generation of high-fidelity computational meshes. The multi block-structured, high-fidelity meshing tool PADRAM is enhanced to cope with the tandem blade topologies. The wakes of each aerofoil is properly resolved and the interaction and the mixing of the front aerofoil wake and the second tandem vane are adequately resolved.