The flow field in axial gas turbines is driven by strong unsteady interactions between stationary and moving components. While time-averaged measurements can highlight many important flow features, developing a deeper understanding of the complicated flows present in high-speed turbomachinery requires time-accurate measurements that capture this unsteady behavior. Towards this end, time-accurate measurements are presented for a fully cooled transonic high-pressure turbine stage operating at design-corrected conditions. The turbine is run in a short-duration blowdown facility with uniform, radial, and hot streak vane-inlet temperature profiles as well as various amounts of cooling flow. High frequency response surface-pressure and heat-flux instrumentation installed in the rotating blade row, stator vane row, and stationary outer shroud provide detailed measurements of the flow behavior for this stage. Previous papers by Haldeman et al. [1, 2] have reported the time-averaged results from this experiment, but this paper focuses on the strong unsteady phenomena that are observed. Heat-flux measurements from double-sided heat-flux gauges cover three span-wise locations on the blade pressure and suction surfaces. In addition, there are two instrumented blades with the cooling holes blocked to isolate the effect of just blade cooling. The stage can be run with the vane and blade cooling flow either on or off. High-frequency pressure measurements provide a picture of the unsteady aerodynamics on the vane and blade airfoil surfaces, as well as inside the serpentine coolant supply passages of the blade. A time-accurate CFD simulation is also run to predict the blade surface pressure and heat-flux, and comparisons between prediction and measurement are given.
It is found that unsteady variations in heat-flux and pressure are stronger at low to mid-span and weaker at high span, likely due to the impact of secondary flows such as the tip leakage flow. Away from the tip, it is seen that the unsteady fluctuations in pressure and heat-flux are mostly in-phase with each other on the suction side, but there is some deviation on the pressure side. The flow field is ultimately shown to be highly three-dimensional, as the movement of high heat transfer regions can be traced in both the chord and span-wise directions. These measurements provide a unique picture of the unsteady flow physics of a rotating turbine, and efforts to better understand and model these time-varying flows have the potential to change the way we think about even the time-averaged flow characteristics.