Research Papers

Detailed Measurements of Spike Formation in an Axial Compressor

[+] Author and Article Information
Stephanie Weichert

The Technology Partnership,
Melbourn SG8 6EE, UK
e-mail: stephanie.weichert@ttp.com

Ivor Day

Whittle Laboratory,
University of Cambridge,
Cambridge CB3 0DY, UK
e-mail: ijd1000@cam.ac.uk

Contributed by the International Gas Turbine Institute (IGTI) of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF TURBOMACHINERY. Manuscript received June 9, 2013; final manuscript received July 21, 2013; published online September 27, 2013. Editor: Ronald Bunker.

J. Turbomach 136(5), 051006 (Sep 27, 2013) (9 pages) Paper No: TURBO-13-1094; doi: 10.1115/1.4025166 History: Received June 09, 2013; Revised July 21, 2013

This paper presents new experimental measurements of spike-type stall inception. The measurements were carried out in the single stage Deverson compressor at the Whittle Laboratory. The primary objective was to characterize the flow field in the tip clearance gap during stall inception using sufficient instrumentation to give high spatial and temporal resolution. Measurements were recorded using arrays of unsteady pressure transducers over the rotor tips and hot-wires in the tip gap. Prestall ensemble averaged velocity and pressure maps were obtained as well as pressure contours of the stall event. In order to study the transient inception process in greater detail, vector maps were built up from hundreds of stalling events using a triggering system based on the stalling event itself. The results show an embryonic disturbance starting within the blade passage and leading to the formation of a clear spike. The origins of the spike and its relation to the tip leakage vortex are discussed. It has also been shown that before stall, the flow in the blade passage which is most likely to stall is generally more unsteady, from revolution to revolution, than the other passages in the annulus.

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Fig. 1

Hot-wire and total pressure probe schematics

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Fig. 2

Ensemble averaged absolute frame velocity vectors at 50% tip gap and static pressure contours at design (top) and near stall (bottom) conditions

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Fig. 3

Stall inception traces obtained from pressure transducers located near the leading edges at seven circumferential locations

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Fig. 4

Setup schematic and detail of rotor overtip access for study of spike at the stage of traditional detection

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Fig. 5

Static pressure contours of established spike over four rotor pitches

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Fig. 6

Schematic of concentrated probe access for study of spike formation. Pressure transducers, red; hot-wires, green (one configuration shown).

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Fig. 7

Instantaneous (space–time) static pressure contours during embryonic spike formation

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Fig. 8

Absolute frame velocity vectors during embryonic spike formation (at 50% tip clearance)

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Fig. 9

Unsteadiness at design and near stall conditions

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Fig. 10

Absolute frame velocity vectors at 97% span for conditions at A.1 (top, where embryonic spike has formed in the passage) and A.5 (bottom, at first propagation of spike). The axial spacing between the vectors and blade leading edge plane has been exaggerated in this figure. The actual spacing is about 1 mm.



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