Design Space Exploration of Turbine Blade Shroud Interlock for Flutter Stability
Volume 10A: Structures and Dynamics
The geared turbofan engines bring the potential to rotate the fan at lower speed and allow an increase in diameter, which in turn leads to an increase in propulsive efficiency through high by-pass ratio. The low-pressure turbine stages driving the fan can also rotate at high speed resulting in fewer stages when compared to traditional turbofans. However, when operating at high speed, pressure fluctuations due to self-excited vibrations increase and may provoke flutter instabilities. In a geared
... architecture, to deliver the high power required by the fan and the intermediate-pressure compressor, the low-pressure turbine system operates at higher temperatures compared to its predecessors. This phenomenon requires structural materials with higher heat resistance, which carries the inconvenience of poor welding suitability. That is the reason why alternative non-welded blade shroud joint techniques are so important, techniques as the blade interlock mechanism studied in this work. This manuscript examines the effects of different design parameters of a low-pressure turbine blade shroud interlock on flutter stability, to make future recommendations for geared engines. The shrouded turbine rotor blades feature blade interlocks, which enhances the dynamic stability by providing stiffness to the rotor blade row. To assess the stability of the system, a parametric design of a turbine blade-disk assembly was prepared. In the parametric model the design variables that define the blade interlock are the interlock angle, interlock axial position, interlock contact length and height, knife seal position and pre-twist angle. After parametrization, a finite element model of the turbine blade and disk assembly was prepared with cyclic symmetry boundary condition. The stresses caused by rotation were calculated in a static structural analysis and these were used as pre-stress boundary conditions in modal analysis. The modal results were afterwards exchanged with an aerodynamic model to obtain the aerodynamic damping for different blade interlock design configurations. In the present work, the dynamic response of the first three excitation modes was analyzed. It was found that the third mode was stable for all the design points, whereas first and second modes were unstable at least for the reference design point. Among the considered six different parameters that define the blade interlock geometry, the interlock contact position turned to be the most influential parameter for modal response and for flutter stability. Moving the interlock contact position towards the trailing edge gave the most beneficial results. On the other hand, the interlock angle showed the least influence on both, the modal analysis and flutter behavior. The accomplished Design of Experiments and subsequent optimization process also conclude that there exists an interdependency between the studied parameters.