This paper presents an experimental and computational study of the effect of inlet swirl on the efficiency of a transonic turbine stage. The efficiency penalty is approximately 1%, but it is argued that this could be recovered by correct design. There are attendant changes in capacity, work function, and stage total-to-total pressure ratio, which are discussed in detail. Experiments were performed using the unshrouded MT1 high-pressure turbine installed in the Oxford Turbine Research Facility (OTRF) (formerly at QinetiQ Farnborough): an engine scale, short duration, rotating transonic facility, in which M, Re, Tgas/Twall, and N/T01 are matched to engine conditions. The research was conducted under the EU Turbine Aero-Thermal External Flows (TATEF II) program. Turbine efficiency was experimentally determined to within bias and precision uncertainties of approximately ±1.4% and ±0.2%, respectively, to 95% confidence. The stage mass flow rate was metered upstream of the turbine nozzle, and the turbine power was measured directly using an accurate strain-gauge based torque measurement system. The turbine efficiency was measured experimentally for a condition with uniform inlet flow and a condition with pronounced inlet swirl. Full stage computational fluid dynamics (CFD) was performed using the Rolls-Royce Hydra solver. Steady and unsteady solutions were conducted for both the uniform inlet baseline case and a case with inlet swirl. The simulations are largely in agreement with the experimental results. A discussion of discrepancies is given.

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