Research Papers

Effect of Leakage Flows on the Performance of a Family of Inline Centrifugal Compressors

[+] Author and Article Information
Hamid Hazby

PCA Engineers Ltd.,
Studio 2, Deepdale Enterprise Park, Nettleham,
Lincoln LN24GB, UK
e-mail: h.hazby@pcaeng.co.uk

Michael Casey

PCA Engineers Ltd,
Biberlinstrasse 20,
Zürich CH-8032, Switzerland
e-mail: michael.casey@casey-s.ch

Luboš Březina

Howden ČKD Compressors s.r.o.,
Klečákova 347/5,
190 00 Praha 9, Czechia
e-mail: lubos.brezina@howden.com

1Corresponding author.

2Present address: RotMach s.r.o., Koněvova 2660/24, 130 00 Praha 3, Czechia.

Manuscript received December 3, 2018; final manuscript received May 13, 2019; published online June 3, 2019. Assoc. Editor: Seung Jin Song.

J. Turbomach 141(9), 091006 (Jun 03, 2019) (7 pages) Paper No: TURBO-18-1347; doi: 10.1115/1.4043786 History: Received December 03, 2018; Accepted May 14, 2019

The impact of the hub and shroud leakage flows on the compressor efficiency has been investigated for four compressor stages with flow coefficients of 0.017, 0.0265, 0.063, and 0.118 belonging to a family of centrifugal compressor stages, designed for process compressor applications. A very good agreement was observed between the measured and predicted performance when the detailed geometrical features were included in the calculations. The computational fluid dynamics (CFD) calculations indicated that addition of leakage cavities and leakage flows resulted in about 3% drop in stage polytropic efficiency for the highest flow coefficient stage. The detrimental effect of leakages increased to about 8% for the lowest flow coefficient stage investigated here. The increase in the compressor work input due to the disc windage and the leakage recirculation was estimated from the CFD calculations and compared with values obtained using 1D methods, showing a very good agreement between the two. The impact of parasitic losses on compressor efficiency has been investigated and the contribution of various loss sources to the stage efficiency is discussed.

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Fig. 1

Range of flow coefficient covered by each master stage and its corresponding derived stages in the family

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Fig. 2

Compressor test rig [7]

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Fig. 3

Leakage paths and calculation domains for stages with lowest and highest flow coefficients

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Fig. 4

Mesh topologies in various domains, ϕ = 0.118

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Fig. 5

Predicted and measured performance parameters at the design speed (Mu2 = 0.9)

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Fig. 6

Difference in predicted peak polytropic efficiency with and without leakage paths included

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Fig. 7

Contours of entropy at impeller inlet

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Fig. 8

Contours of entropy near impeller outlet

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Fig. 9

Contours of entropy at 7% downstream of the impeller trailing edge

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Fig. 10

Variation of the PIF with flow coefficient at peak efficiency: (a) overall PIF and (b) breakdown of the components according to Eq. (1)

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Fig. 11

Proportion of the hub and shroud leakage flow to inlet mass flow at peak efficiency condition

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Fig. 12

Prediction of PIF using CFD, 1D correlations, and Eq. (6)

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Fig. 13

Drop in stage peak efficiency due to leakages

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Fig. 14

Effect of hub and shroud leakages on the compressor performance



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