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An Experimental and Numerical Investigation Into the Mechanisms of Rotating Instability

[+] Author Affiliations
Joachim März

STN Atlas Elektronik GmbH, Germany

Chunill Hah

NASA Glenn Research Center

Wolfgang Neise

DLR, Germany

Paper No. 2001-GT-0536, pp. V001T03A084; 10 pages
  • ASME Turbo Expo 2001: Power for Land, Sea, and Air
  • Volume 1: Aircraft Engine; Marine; Turbomachinery; Microturbines and Small Turbomachinery
  • New Orleans, Louisiana, USA, June 4–7, 2001
  • Conference Sponsors: International Gas Turbine Institute
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-7850-7
  • Copyright © 2001 by ASME


This paper reports on an experimental and numerical investigation aimed at understanding the mechanisms of rotating instabilities in a low speed axial flow compressor. The phenomena of rotating instabilities in the current compressor were first identified with an experimental study. Then, an unsteady numerical method was applied to confirm the phenomena and to interrogate the physical mechanisms behind them. The experimental study was conducted with high-resolution pressure measurements at different clearances, employing a double phase-averaging technique. The numerical investigation was performed with an unsteady 3-D Navier-Stokes method that solves for the entire blade row. The current study reveals that a vortex structure forms near the leading edge plane. This vortex is the result of interactions among the classical tip-clearance flow, axially reversed endwall flow, and the incoming flow. The vortex travels from the suction side to the pressure side of the passage at roughly half of the rotor speed. The formation and movement of this vortex seem to be the main causes of unsteadiness when rotating instability develops. Due to the nature of this vortex, the classical tip-clearance flow does not spill over into the following blade passage. This behavior of the tip-clearance flow is why the compressor operates in a stable mode even with the rotating instability, unlike traditional rotating stall phenomena.

Copyright © 2001 by ASME



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