Experimental and Computational Results From the NASA Lewis Low-Speed Centrifugal Impeller at Design and Part-Flow Conditions

[+] Author and Article Information
R. M. Chriss, J. R. Wood

NASA Lewis Research Center, Cleveland, OH 44135

M. D. Hathaway

Vehicle Propulsion Directorate, U.S. Army Research Laboratory, Cleveland, OH

J. Turbomach 118(1), 55-65 (Jan 01, 1996) (11 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2836607 History: Received February 26, 1994; Online January 29, 2008


The NASA Lewis Low-Speed Centrifugal Compressor (LSCC) has been investigated with laser anemometry and computational analysis at two flow conditions: the design condition as well as a lower mass flow condition. Previously reported experimental and computational results at the design condition are in the literature (Hathaway et al., 1993). In that paper extensive analysis showed that inducer blade boundary layers are centrifuged outward and entrained into the tip clearance flow and hence contribute significantly to the throughflow wake. In this report results are presented for a lower mass flow condition along with further results from the design case. The data set contained herein consists of three-dimensional laser velocimeter results upstream, inside, and downstream of the impeller. In many locations data have been obtained in the blade and endwall boundary layers. The data are presented in the form of throughflow velocity contours as well as secondary flow vectors. The results reported herein illustrate the effects of flow rate on the development of the through flow momentum wake as well as on the secondary flow. The computational results presented confirm the ability of modern computational tools to model the complex flow in a subsonic centrifugal compressor accurately. However, the blade tip shape and tip clearance must be known in order to properly simulate the flow physics. In addition, the ability to predict changes in the throughflow wake, which is largely fed by the tip clearance flow, as the impeller is throttled should give designers much better confidence in using computational tools to improve impeller performance.

Copyright © 1996 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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