The development of high performance turbine airfoils has been investigated under the condition of a supersonic exit Mach number. In order to obtain a new aerodynamic design concept for a high loaded turbine rotor blade, we employed an evolutionary algorithm for numerical optimization. The target of the optimization method, which is called evolution strategy (ES), was the minimization of the total pressure loss and the deviation angle. The optimization process includes the representation of the airfoil geometry, the generation of the grid for a blade-to-blade CFD analysis, and a 2D Navier-Stokes solver with a low-Re k-ε turbulence model in order to evaluate the performance. Some interesting aspects, for example, a double shock system, an early transition and a re-distribution of aerodynamic loading on blade surface, observed in the optimized airfoil, are discussed. The increased performance of the optimized blade has been confirmed by detailed experimental investigation, using conventional probes, hot-films and L2F system.

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