Increasing pressure to reduce pollutant emissions such as NOx and CO, while simultaneously increasing the efficiency of gas turbines, has led to the development of modern gas turbine combustors operating at lean equivalence ratios and high compression ratios. These modern combustors use a large portion of the compressor air in the combustion process and hence efficient use of cooling air is critical. Backside impingement cooling is one alternative for advanced cooling in gas turbine combustors. The dome of the combustor is a primary example where backside impingement cooling is extensively used. The dome directly interacts with the flame and hence represents a limiting factor for combustor durability. The present paper studies two aspects of dome cooling: the impingement heat transfer on the dome heat shield of an annular combustor and the effect of the outflow from the spent air on the liner heat transfer. A transient measurement technique using Thermochromic Liquid Crystals (TLCs) was used to characterize the convective heat transfer coefficient on the backside of an industrial heat shield design provided by Solar Turbines, Inc. for Reynolds numbers (with respect to the hole diameter) of ∼ 1500 and ∼ 2500. Reynolds-Averaged Navier Stokes (RANS) calculations using the k-ω SST turbulence model were found to be in good agreement with the experiment. A standard heat transfer correlation for impingement hole arrays overestimated the mean heat transfer coefficient compared to the experiment and computations, however this could be explained by low biases in the results.

Steady state IR measurements were performed to study the effects that the spent air from the heat shield impingement cooling had on the liner convective heat transfer. Measurements were taken for three Reynolds numbers (with respect to the hydraulic diameter of the combustor annulus) including 50000, 90000, and 130000. A downstream shift in the flow features was observed due to the secondary flow introduced by the outflow, as well as a significant increase in the convective heat transfer close to the dome wall.

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