For the small to medium thrust range of modern aero engines, highly loaded single stage HP turbines facilitate an attractive alternative to a more conventional 2-stage HPT architecture. Whereas the potential benefits of reductions in component length and part count, hence, in weight and cost do motivate their application, the related risks are in maintaining associated losses of supersonic flows at low values as well as managing the interaction losses between HPT and the downstream sub-component to arrive at competitive levels of component efficiencies. This paper focuses on fundamental aerodynamic concept studies and related cascade experiments in support of a future highly loaded high-pressure turbine architecture. Starting with some general remarks on low-loss supersonic aerodynamic concepts for high-pressure turbines, results from development efforts towards 2D airfoil concepts viable for high-pressure turbine airfoils are shown. In particular, CFD based design approaches are compared against experimental data taken at DLR Go¨ttingen in un-cooled cascade tests and at engine representative levels of Mach and Reynolds numbers. For the airfoils investigated, it turns out that there is indeed a supersonic Mach number range were loss levels are comparable to high Mach number subsonic values, thereby enabling a competitive aerodynamic design concept for a 3D high-pressure turbine stage.

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