Characterising the Influence of Impeller Exit Recirculation on Centrifugal Compressor Work Input

[+] Author and Article Information
Charles Stuart

Queen's University Belfast, Belfast BT9 5AH, UK

Stephen W T Spence

Queen's University Belfast, Belfast BT9 5AH, UK

Dietmar Filsinger

IHI Charging Systems International, Heidelberg 69126, Germany

Andre Starke

IHI Charging Systems International, Heidelberg 69126, Germany

Sung in Kim

Queen's University Belfast, Belfast BT9 5AH, UK

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4038120 History: Received September 05, 2017; Revised September 19, 2017


Impeller recirculation is a loss which has long been considered in 1-D modelling, however the full extent of its impact on stage performance has not been analysed. Recirculation has traditionally been considered purely as a parasitic loss, i.e. one which absorbs work but does not contribute to total pressure rise across the stage. Having extensively analysed the impact of recirculation on the impeller exit flow field, it was possible to show that it has far reaching consequences beyond that of increasing total temperature. The overall aim of this package of work was to apply a much more physical treatment to the impact of impeller exit recirculation (and the aerodynamic blockage associated with it), and hence realise an improvement in the 1-D stage performance prediction of six automotive turbocharger centrifugal compressors. A combination of validated 3-D Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) data and gas stand test data was employed to capture the variation of the blockage presented to the flow with both geometry and operating condition. The resulting approach involving the impeller outlet to inlet area ratio and a novel flow coefficient term permitted the generation of a single equation to represent impeller exit blockage levels for the entire operating map of all six compressor stages under investigation. As a result of this analysis, the improvement in the 1-D performance prediction is presented, along with a number of design recommendations to ensure that the detrimental effects associated with the presence of impeller exit recirculation can be minimised.

Copyright (c) 2017 by ASME
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