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HEATTOP is a FP6 STREP project and stands for Accurate High Temperature Engine Aero-Thermal Measurements for Gas-Turbine Life Optimization, Performance and Condition Monitoring.
Project costs are 8.8 M€ with an EU contribution of 5.2 M€ and 17 partners are involved. The project addresses the need for improved instrumentation to be used in development, design evaluation and performance monitoring of aero engines and industrial gas turbines for power generation. In the middle of interest are the hottest regions of engines, the combustors and HP turbines where temperatures reach 2000K.
The temperatures affect directly engine efficiency and life time of components. As current sensors cannot be placed in the hottest regions, knowledge of conditions inside the turbine is gathered from outside measurements which are then extrapolated by using models and assumptions. Turbine parts and other hot gas components are very expensive, have a shorter life time due to heavy mechanical and thermal loads and are critical for engine reliability. Accurate knowledge of temperatures would be very beneficial in predicting their life time and verify the performance of a design. Other aerodynamic parameters as dynamic and static pressure and clearances affect efficiency, operation and health of an engine.
Clearances between blade tips and inner turbine housing contribute to efficiency losses over the turbine and therefore are kept to be as small as possible while at the same time rubbing of blades with subsequent turbine failure must be avoided. Dynamic pressures need to be accurately measured to assure the mechanical integrity of the engine. All partners delivered new sensors and techniques which were tested and validated in the partner’s labs, in rigs and finally real production engines of Rolls-Royce, Siemens and Volvo up to varying Technology Readiness Levels (TRL). The most advanced technique in respect to achieved TRL are the dynamic pressure sensor by Oxsensis, which was validated in BTB engine and up to 1000°C at a Rolls-Royce rig and a fast response thermocouple by Auxitrol.
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