A series of high-pressure turbine nozzle guide vanes has been designed for progressively increasing blade loading and reduction in blade solidity without additional loss penalty. Early members of the series achieved this by changes to the suction surface contour, but for the latest design the pressure surface contour was extensively modified to reduce the velocities on this surface substantially. Cascade testing revealed that this vane had a higher loss than its predecessor, and this appears to be largely due to a long region of boundary layer growth on the suction surface and possibly also an unsteady separation. These tests demonstrated the value of a flattened pitot tube held against the blade surface in determining the boundary layer state. By using a pitot probe of only modest frequency response (of order 100 Hz) it was possible to observe significant qualitative differences in the raw signals from laminar, transitional and turbulent boundary layers, which have previously been observed only with much higher frequency instruments. The test results include a comparison of boundary layer measurements on the same cascade test section in two different high-speed wind tunnels. This comparison suggests that freestream turbulence can have a large effect on boundary layer development and growth.

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