Project Details


A critical issue facing gas turbine designers today is the ingress of hot (1300 K) mainstream gases into the wheel-space between the turbine disc (rotor) and its adjacent casing (stator). Complex rim seals and the diversion of a relatively dense sealant flow (800 K) are used to prevent ingress. Insufficient sealing can cause overheating and premature failure of critical engine components; superfluous sealing reduces the efficiency of the engine, making it uncompetitive in a world market dominated by increasing fuel costs and reducing CO2 emissions. Two recent experimental programmes (EP/M026345/1 & EP/J014826/1, both funded collaboratively by EPSRC and Siemens) have modelled ingress in turbine test rigs at low TRL. The programmes have had great success both in terms of industrial impact and academic publication. In the process of interrogating flow-paths using CO2 as a tracer gas at isothermal (300K) conditions, a considerable – and potentially catastrophic – reduction in rim-seal effectiveness was discovered when the density ratio between the cold sealing and hot mainstream was not properly modelled. To the investigators’ knowledge, no academic or industrial practice presently accounts for this significant effect. It is not possible to simulate high engine temperatures at low TRL. The aim of this project is to experimentally model the engine density effect in a gas turbine rig at isothermal conditions using CO2 as a foreign, dense gas.
Effective start/end date1/06/2130/06/22


  • Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council


Explore the research topics touched on by this project. These labels are generated based on the underlying awards/grants. Together they form a unique fingerprint.