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an experimental investigation of the flow physics associated with end wall losses and large rotor tip clearances as found in the rear stages of a high pressure compressorThe focus of this work was to characterize the fundamental flow physics and the overall performance effects due to increased rotor tip clearance heights in axial compressors. Data have been collected in the three-stage axial research compressor at Purdue University with a specific focus on analyzing the multistage effects resulting from the tip leakage flow. Three separate rotor tip clearance heights were studied with nominal tip clearance heights of 1.5%, 3.0%, and 4.0% based on a constant annulus height. Overall compressor performance was investigated at four corrected speedlines (100%, 90%, 80%, and 68%) for each of the three tip clearance configurations using total pressure and total temperature rakes distributed throughout the compressor. The results have confirmed results from previous authors showing a decrease of total pressure rise, isentropic efficiency, and stall margin which is approximately linear with increasing tip clearance height. The stall inception mechanisms have also been evaluated at the same corrected speeds for each of the tip clearance configurations. Detailed flow field measurements have been collected at two loading conditions, nominal loading (NL) and high loading (HL), on the 100% corrected speedline for the smallest and largest tip clearance heights (1.5% and 4.0%). Steady detailed radial traverses of total pressure at the exit of each stator row have been supported by flow visualization techniques to identify regions of flow recirculation and separation. Furthermore, detailed radial traverses of time-resolved total pressures at the exit of each rotor row have been measured with a fast-response pressure probe. These data have helped to quantify the size of the leakage flow at the exit of each rotor. Thermal anemometry has also been implemented to evaluate the time-resolved three-dimensional components of velocity throughout the compressor and calculate blockage due to the rotor tip leakage flow throughout the compressor. These measurements have also been used to calculate streamwise vorticity. Time-resolved static pressure measurements have been collected over the rotor tips for all rotors with each of the three tip clearance configurations for up to five loading conditions along the 100% corrected speedline using fast-response piezoresistive pressure sensors. These time-resolved static pressure measurements, as well as the time-resolved total pressures and velocities have helped to reveal a profound influence of the upstream stator vane on the size and shape of the rotor tip leakage flow. Finally, a novel particle image velocimetry (PIV) technique has been developed as a proof-of- concept. In contrast to PIV methods that have been typically been utilized for turbomachinery applications in the past, the method used for this study introduced the laser light through the same access window that was also used to image the flow. This new method addresses potential concerns related to the intrusive laser-introducing techniques that have typically been utilized by other authors in the past. Ultimately, the data collected for this project represent a unique data set which contributes to build a better understanding of the tip leakage flow field and its associated loss mechanisms. These data will facilitate future engine design goals leading to small blade heights in the rear stages of high pressure compressors and aid in the development of new blade designs which are desensitized to the performance penalties attributed to rotor tip leakage flows.
Document ID
Document Type
Other - Data Set
Berdanier, Reid A.
(Purdue Univ. West Lafayette, IN, United States)
Key, Nicole L.
(Purdue Univ. West Lafayette, IN, United States)
Date Acquired
March 1, 2018
Publication Date
September 1, 2015
Subject Category
Fluid Mechanics and Thermodynamics
Aircraft Propulsion and Power
Report/Patent Number
Funding Number(s)
WBS: WBS 338881.
Distribution Limits
Public Use Permitted.

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IDRelationTitle20150021045Supplement ToAn Experimental Investigation of the Flow Physics Associated With End Wall Losses and Large Rotor Tip Clearances as Found in the Rear Stages of a High Pressure Compressor20150021045See AlsoAn Experimental Investigation of the Flow Physics Associated With End Wall Losses and Large Rotor Tip Clearances as Found in the Rear Stages of a High Pressure Compressor