The rotor casing of gas turbine engines is generally cooled with cooling air from compressors and then the cooling air is discharged into the passage flow of the rotor. In this paper, a novel design both for the blade tip leakage flow control and for the rotor casing and tip cooling is proposed. Cooling air is injected through a pair of inclined rows of discrete holes positioned between 30% and 50% axial chord downstream of the blade leading edge in the casing. The casing injection forms as air-curtain within the blade tip gap, and inhibits the development of the tip leakage flows and provides secondary-order cooling for the rotor tip. Air injection from the rotor casing onto flat and recessed blade tips is investigated using numerical simulations that is validated by extensive aerodynamic and heat transfer experimental data. Flow and film cooling over the blade tip and turbine overall aerodynamic performance are examined in detail for two casing injection rates. Comparisons between flat tip without casing injection (baseline) case and the casing injection cases show that the air-curtain injection significantly alters the flow structures near the casing by modifying the development and migration of the tip leakage flow. The air-curtain injection over the flat and recessed tips both generates turbine stage overall aerodynamic efficiency improvement due to the sealing effects of the casing injection, but the efficiency gain depends on the competing results between the sealing effects and the “over-blown” effects of the air-curtain injection. Applying a recess to the blade tip is generally detrimental to the efficiency improvement by the air-curtain injection. In addition to efficiency improvement, secondary-order cooling effects from the casing injection are found to provide considerable thermal protection for the blade tips. However, increasing injection rate reduces the film cooling performance over the rotor tip surfaces. The recessed tip could present better film cooling effectiveness than the flat tip in the presence of the air-curtain.

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