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Investigation of a Centrifugal Compressor Stage With Two Volutes and the Same Impeller

[+] Author Affiliations
Yinghui Dai, Abraham Engeda

Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

Michael Cave, Jean-Luc Di Liberti

Solar Turbines, Inc.

Paper No. IMECE2003-55213, pp. 1-8; 8 pages
  • ASME 2003 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Process Industries
  • Washington, DC, USA, November 15–21, 2003
  • Conference Sponsors: Process Industries Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-3725-4 | eISBN: 0-7918-4663-6, 0-7918-4664-4, 0-7918-4665-2
  • Copyright © 2003 by ASME


Volute scroll, conic diffuser and sudden expansion discharge loss account for 4–6 points of efficiency decrement in a typical centrifugal compressor stage. The flow in a volute is highly complex. It is strongly believed that understanding of the detailed flow structure in a volute will provide insights on minimizing the losses by isolating the mechanisms that contributes to entropy generation. The result will be a more efficient centrifugal compressor product for customers and users and a product at higher profitability levels for manufacturers. This paper presents the experimental and numerical investigation on the matching of two different overhung volutes to the same centrifugal compressor impeller. The experimental data were measured from flange to flange firstly, then three Kiel probes were installed on pinch position circumferentially. At the same time, a detailed numerical simulation of the performance of the two volutes has been carried out. A computational model, using the k-ε turbulence model and the wall function, has been used to predict the internal flow of the both volutes. A good agreement between experimental data and numerical simulation results is found. The overall performance of the two volutes was also discussed in detail.

Copyright © 2003 by ASME



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