In the system considered here, corotating “turbine” discs are cooled by air supplied at the periphery of the system. The system comprises two corotating discs, connected by a rotating cylindrical hub and shrouded by a stepped, stationary cylindrical outer casing. Cooling air enters the system through holes in the periphery of one disc, and leaves through the clearances between the outer casing and the discs.

The paper describes a combined computational and experimental study of the heat transfer in the above system. In the experiments, one rotating disc is heated, the hub and outer casing are insulated, and the other disc is quasi-adiabatic. Thermocouples and fluxmeters attached to the heated disc enable the Nusselt numbers, Nu, to be determined for a wide range of rotational speeds and coolant flow rates.

Computations are carried out using an axisymmetric elliptic solver incorporating the Launder-Sharma low-Reynolds-number k-ε turbulence model. The flow structure is shown to be complex and depends strongly on the so-called turbulent flow parameter, λT, which incorporates both rotational speed and flow rate. For a given value of λT, the computations show that Nu increases as Reϕ, the rotational Reynolds number, increases. Despite the complexity of the flow, the agreement between the computed and measured Nusselt numbers is reasonably good.

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