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J. Turbomach. 2018;140(7):071001-071001-13. doi:10.1115/1.4039806.

Self-recirculating injection, which bleeds air from the downstream duct of the last blade row and injects air as a wall jet upstream of the first rotor blade row, is experimentally investigated after the design of its structure in single- and three-stage axial flow compressors. External injection and outlet bleed air are selected for comparison. Results show that self-recirculating injection can improve the stall margin by 13.67% and 13% on the premise of no efficiency penalty in single- and three-stage axial flow compressors with only 0.7% and 4.2% of the total injected momentum ratio recirculated near stall, respectively. The self-recirculating injection is the best among all the three cases if the influence on pressure rise coefficient and efficiency is comprehensively considered. Moreover, findings indicate that the upstream injection plays an important role in terms of stability-enhancement. The details of the flow field are captured using a collection of pressure transducers on the casing with circumferential and chordwise spatial resolution. A detailed comparative analysis of the endwall flow indicates that the self-recirculating injection can postpone the occurrence of stalling in the proposed compressor by delaying the forward movement of the interface between the tip leakage flow (TLF) and main stream flow (MF), weakening the unsteadiness of TLF (UTLF), and sharply decreasing the circumferentially propagating speed dominated by the UTLF that triggers the spike-type stall inception. Finally, the stall control concept on the stage that first generates stall inception using self-recirculating injection is proposed. This study helps to guide the design of self-recirculating injection in actual application.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster
J. Turbomach. 2018;140(7):071002-071002-11. doi:10.1115/1.4039821.

Exhaust diffusers significantly enhance the available power output and efficiency of gas and steam turbines by allowing lower turbine exit pressures. The residual dynamic pressure of the turbine outflow is converted into static pressure, which is referred to as pressure recovery. Since total pressure losses and construction costs increase drastically with diffuser length, it is strongly preferred to design shorter diffusers with steeper opening angles. However, these designs are more susceptible to boundary layer separation. In this paper, the stabilizing properties of tip leakage vortices generated in the last rotor row and their effect on the boundary layer characteristics are examined. Based on analytical considerations, for the first time, a correlation between the pressure recovery of the diffuser and the integral rotor parameters of the last stage, namely, the loading coefficient, flow coefficient, and reduced frequency, is established. Experimental data and scale-resolving simulations, carried out with the shear stress transport scale-adaptive simulation (SST-SAS) method, both show excellent agreement with the correlation. Blade tip vortex strength predominantly depends on the amount of work exchanged between fluid and rotor, which in turn is described by the nondimensional loading coefficient. The flow coefficient influences mainly the orientation of the vortex, which affects the interaction between vortex and boundary layer. The induced velocity field accelerates the boundary layer, essentially reducing the thickness of the separated layer or even preventing separation locally.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster

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