The secondary air flow system of a gas turbine cools and seals those parts of the turbine which would otherwise be exposed to the high temperatures, resulting in their life reduction or even failures. At the same time, excessive secondary air flow hinders the performance of the engine. Accurate analysis of the secondary system is therefore necessary to safeguard the reliable design of the engine and accurate life predictions. The secondary system is analyzed through the flow network analysis which comprises of chambers or cavities connected through flow passages or restrictions. There are significant number of locations where the air passes through stationary or rotating holes, e.g., the pre-swirl nozzles and the turbine blade receiver holes respectively.

The accuracy of the flow prediction depends on the accuracy of the orifice discharge coefficient. This paper provides a detailed assessment of the available discharge coefficient correlations. The discharge coefficient has been found to be dependent on the geometric parameters (viz., length, inlet radius, chamfer), and the amount of cross-flow at the orifice entrance. The cross-flow may result from the relative tangential velocity between the orifice and the air or the inclination of the inlet flow with respect to the orifice axis. In this study, it was found that the discharge coefficient correlations provide similar predictions for flows without any cross-flow. However, significant deviations are seen in the predictions for the cases involving cross-flow. To identify the most accurate correlation for secondary flow application, a thorough assessment was performed using the static and the rotating test data available in the literature. In addition to the comparison using available experimental data, a CFD study was performed to independently assess the correlations. This exercise led to the identification of the most suitable correlation for our application.

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