Experimental and Computational Investigations of Low-Pressure Turbine Separation Control Using Vortex Generator Jets

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

Proceedings of ASME Turbo Expo 2009: Power for Land, Sea, and Air


Boundary layer separation control has been studied using vortex generator jets (VGJs) on a very high lift, low-pressure turbine airfoil. Experiments were done under low freestream turbulence conditions on a linear cascade in a low speed wind tunnel. Pressure surveys on the airfoil surface and downstream total pressure loss surveys were documented. Cases were considered at Reynolds numbers (based on the suction surface length and the nominal exit velocity from the cascade) of 25,000, 50,000 and 100,000. Jet pulsing frequency, duty cycle, and blowing ratio were all varied. In all cases without flow control, the boundary layer separated and did not reattach. With the VGJs, separation control was possible even at the lowest Reynolds number. Pulsed VGJs were more effective than steady jets. At sufficiently high pulsing frequencies, separation control was possible even with low jet velocities and low duty cycles. At lower frequencies, higher jet velocity was required, particularly at low Reynolds numbers. Effective separation control resulted in an increase in lift of up to 20% and a reduction in total pressure losses of up to 70%. Simulations of the flow using an unsteady RANS code with the four equation Transition-sst model produced good agreement with experiments in cases without flow control, correctly predicting separation, transition and reattachment. In cases with VGJs, however, the CFD did not predict the reattachment observed in the experiments.

Copyright © 2009 by ASME


Paper No. GT2009-59983 presented at ASME Turbo Expo 2009: Power for Land, Sea, and Air, Orlando, Florida, USA, June 8–12, 2009.






Turbomachinery, Parts A and B