Strategies for High-Accuracy Measurements of Stage Efficiency for a Cooled Turbine

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Gas turbines are used in a broad range of aerospace and land-based applications from power generation to aviation, and their usage is projected to continue to grow. It is therefore critical to improve turbine efficiency thereby reducing fuel consumption and carbon emissions. Demonstration of new efficiency-increasing technologies requires efficiency measurements that are accurate and repeatable. The Steady Thermal Aero Research Turbine (START) Laboratory at the Pennsylvania State University uses a unique 360-deg traversing system for temperature and pressure probes with redundant torque measurements to quantify thermal efficiency for a single-stage cooled test turbine. Flows in the full annulus have been analyzed and compared with subsector traverse segments centered at different circumferential positions to determine the appropriate sector size. The results from this investigation indicate that the full 360-deg measurement is recommended to minimize variation in calculated stage efficiencies. This study also compares the circumferential variations in thermodynamic and mechanical efficiency definitions, finding that the thermodynamic efficiency calculation results in a higher accuracy for full exit plane measurements. A statistical analysis was then performed to determine the number of 360-deg traverse measurements required to achieve a precision uncertainty at most that of the bias uncertainty. This study establishes guidelines to streamline experimental procedures by limiting the necessary test count per day per operating condition to five measurements for at most four test days. Following these procedures establishes a bias of εb = 0.19 points, resulting in a total uncertainty of at most εt = 0.32 points.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number101009
JournalJournal of Turbomachinery
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2024

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Mechanical Engineering

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