Revolutionizing Turbine Cooling with Micro-Architectures Enabled by Direct Metal Laser Sintering

 

(a) Typical Nozzle Guide Vanes (NGV) cooling<br/>scheme (Bunker, 2013) and (b) Notional NGV<br/>model for transonic cascade testing incorporating<br/>various cooling designs.
(a) Typical Nozzle Guide Vanes (NGV) cooling
scheme (Bunker, 2013) and (b) Notional NGV
model for transonic cascade testing incorporating
various cooling designs.
Performer: 
Ohio State University
Website:  Ohio State University
Award Number:  FE0025320
Project Duration:  10/01/2015 – 09/30/2018
Total Award Value:  $795,804
DOE Share:  $636,451
Performer Share:  $159,353
Technology Area:  Advanced Turbines
Key Technology: 
Location:  Columbus, Ohio

Project Description

The objective of this research by The Ohio State University (OSU) is to explore innovative cooling architectures enabled by additive manufacturing techniques to improve cooling performance and reduce coolant waste. The ability to create complex internal geometries will be leveraged to better distribute coolant through microchannels, as well as to integrate inherently unstable flow devices to enhance internal and external heat transfer. Fundamental experiments will be conducted initially to demonstrate and test each of the technologies at large scale and low speed, as well as to determine optimal geometries and operating conditions. These experiments will reveal the most promising and feasible technologies, which will subsequently be incorporated into stereolithography turbine vanes to be tested at appropriate Mach numbers in a high-speed cascade facility. Four cooling schemes have been identified for investigation: fluidic oscillators as pulsed impingement jets, fluidic oscillators as sweeping film cooling holes, micro-channel surface cooling, and reverse film blowing. Finally, a full material system will be demonstrated using a thermal barrier coated, metal deposition fabricated (using Direct Metal Laser Sintering) turbine vane tested at high speed and under high temperature in the turbine test facilities at OSU. The experimental work will be accompanied by a computational fluid dynamics (CFD) study at each stage. These CFD simulations will enable the exploration of a broader design space during the optimization stage, as well as extrapolation to higher temperatures and pressures not possible in the turbine test facility in the final stages. This project leverages previous research under DOE contract DE-FE0007156.

Project Benefits

Through OSU’s research, DOE and the U.S. gas turbine industry will gain valuable insights into the new design space that is being unlocked by advances in additive manufacturing, leading to innovative cooling designs that outperform mature conventional cooling methods. The reduction in coolant consumption and the increase in cooling effectiveness made possible by the new designs will help the industry achieve its goal of 65 percent combined cycle efficiency.

Contact Information

Federal Project Manager 
Robin Ames: robin.ames@netl.doe.gov
Technology Manager 
Richard Dennis: richard.dennis@netl.doe.gov
Principal Investigator 
Jeffrey Bons: bons.2@osu.edu
 

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