Numerical Investigation of the Aerodynamic Vibration Excitation of High-Pressure Turbine Rotors

University dissertation from Stockholm : Energiteknik

Abstract: The design parameters axial gap and stator count of highpressure turbine stages are evaluated numerically towards theirinfluence on the unsteady aerodynamic excitation of rotorblades. Of particular interest is if and how unsteadyaerodynamic considerations in the design could reduce the riskofhigh cycle fatigue (HCF) failures of the turbine rotor.A well-documented 2D/Q3D non-linear unsteady code (UNSFLO)is chosen to perform the stage flow analyses. The evaluatedresults are interpreted as aerodynamic excitation mechanisms onstream sheets neglecting 3D effects. Mesh studies andvalidations against measurements and 3D computations provideconfidence in the unsteady results. Three test cases areanalysed. First, a typical aero-engine high pressure turbinestage is studied at subsonic and transonic flow conditions,with four axial gaps (37% - 52% of cax,rotor) and two statorconfigurations (43 and 70 NGV). Operating conditions areaccording to the resonant conditions of the blades used inaccompanied experiments. Second, a subsonic high pressureturbine intended to drive the turbopump of a rocket engine isinvestigated. Four axial gap variations (10% - 29% ofcax,rotor) and three stator geometry variations are analysed toextend and generalise the findings made on the first study.Third, a transonic low pressure turbine rotor, known as theInternational Standard Configuration 11, has been modelled tocompute the unsteady flow due to blade vibration and comparedto available experimental data.Excitation mechanisms due to shock, potential waves andwakes are described and related to the work found in the openliterature. The strength of shock excitation leads to increasedpressure excitation levels by a factor 2 to 3 compared tosubsonic cases. Potential excitations are of a typical wavetype in all cases, differences in the propagation direction ofthe waves and the wave reflection pattern in the rotor passagelead to modifications in the time and space resolved unsteadypressures on the blade surface. The significant influence ofoperating conditions, axial gap and stator size on the wavepropagation is discussed on chosen cases. The wake influence onthe rotorblade unsteady pressure is small in the presentevaluations, which is explicitly demonstrated on the turbopumpturbine by a parametric study of wake and potentialexcitations. A reduction in stator size (towards R?1)reduces the potential excitation part so that wake andpotential excitation approach in their magnitude.Potentials to reduce the risk of HCF excitation in transonicflow are the decrease of stator exit Mach number and themodification of temporal relations between shock and potentialexcitation events. A similar temporal tuning of wake excitationto shock excitation appears not efficient because of the smallwake excitation contribution. The increase of axial gap doesnot necessarily decrease the shock excitation strength neitherdoes the decrease of vane size because the shock excitation mayremain strong even behind a smaller stator. The evaluation ofthe aerodynamic excitation towards a HCF risk reduction shouldonly be done with regard to the excited mode shape, asdemonstrated with parametric studies of the mode shapeinfluence on excitability.Keywords:Aeroelasticity, Aerodynamics, Stator-RotorInteraction, Excitation Mechanism, Unsteady Flow Computation,Forced Response, High Cycle Fatigue, Turbomachinery,Gas-Turbine, High-Pressure Turbine, Turbopump, CFD, Design