This paper describes a new modular experimental facility that was purpose-built to investigate flow interactions between the combustor and first stage nozzle guide vanes of heavy duty power generation gas turbines with multiple can combustors. The first stage turbine nozzle guide vane is subjected to the highest thermal loads of all turbine components and therefore consumes a proportionally large amount of cooling air that contributes detrimentally to the stage and cycle efficiency. It has become necessary to devise novel cooling concepts that can substantially reduce the coolant air requirement but still allow the turbine to maintain its aerothermal performance. The present work aims to aid this objective by the design and commissioning of a high-speed linear cascade which consists of two can combustor transition ducts and four first stage nozzle guide vanes. This is a modular non-reactive air test platform with engine realistic geometries (gas path and near gas path), cooling system, and boundary conditions (inlet swirl, turbulence level and boundary layer). The paper presents the various design aspects of the high pressure blow down type facility, and the initial results from a wide range of aerodynamic and heat transfer measurements under highly engine realistic conditions.

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